Economic Development

Bessemer is the place!

Milo’s Tea expansion ribbon-cutting (2017)

If you are a industry or business looking for a home or simply to relocate, the city of Bessemer is the place for you!

Strategically located just south of Birmingham, Alabama, the city of Bessemer is the ideal location for the growth of your business or industry.

Here are just a few reasons to consider Bessemer for your business location:

  • Bessemer is within six hours driving time of  several major Southeastern markets such as Atlanta (2 hours); Nashville (3 hours); Memphis (4 hours); Mobile (4 hours); New Orleans (5 hours); Tallahassee, FL (5 hours) Louisville, KY. (6 hours); Charlotte, N.C. (6 hours) and Little Rock, Ark (6 hours).
  • An estimated 3.2 million people live within a 100-mile radius of Bessemer.
  • The Birmingham-Hoover MSA has a population of 1.14 million people.
  • The Bessemer Municipal Airport  offers general aviation service.
  • Intersects major roadways such as Interstate 20/59,  Interstate 459, U.S. Highway 11, Alabama State Route 150.
  • A Class 1 ISO rated Fire Department.
  • Direct Railway Access to the Port of Mobile.
  • Bessemer Electric and Water Service is owned by the city of Bessemer and is a subsidiary of TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority).
  • The Bessemer Industrial Development Board has a portfolio of  industrial facilities for lease.
  • Quick access to three hospital systems and eight major colleges, universities and vocational schools.
  • Plenty of land for development.

City-sponsored economic development programs.

The city of Bessemer’s Department of Economic Development administers programs using Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to provide loans and grants to businesses to create jobs for low-to-moderate income individuals and expand the tax base of our city. The Department also works to acquire new business and to expand and improve existing Bessemer businesses through a variety of City-sponsored programs.

Economic Development Loan Program.

The Economic Development Loan Program provides for business retention, expansion and recruitment for the City with emphasis on historic commercial revitalization of the National Historic District.

Under the program loans can be made to Commercial property owners as first mortgage loans for historic restoration through facade and general CODE related repairs of commercial buildings. Loans are based on job creation for low to moderate income individuals. A minimum of three new jobs must be created as a result of each loan. Projects must provide for the creation of at least three full time, permanent jobs for low to moderate income persons within three years of the loan closing date. Job creation is a condition of the mortgage such that failure to create the required jobs must result in foreclosure. Loan availability is based on available funding and job creation relative to loan amount. Inasmuch as funds are limited applications are competitive and priority will be  given to the projects that create the greatest number of jobs per dollar loaned. Underwriting considers the after rehabilitation value of the structure rehabilitated, business plan, personal investment of the property owner and cash flow necessary to repay the loan as well as provide the required job creation.

Downtown Historic District Façade Grant Program.

The Historic Facade Program is designed to provide grants to commercial property owners in the National Historic business district for commercial property on the National Historic register. Grants are for Slum and Blight removal pursuant to the historic restoration of building facades, historic building components, historic rehabilitation in general and Fire and Building CODE improvements. All repairs must be in compliance with State of Alabama Historic requirements. Provides grants of up to 20% of the total project cost expenditure of the property owner. The grant total may not exceed $100,000.00 for any given project.

For more information on how our Economic Development Department can assist you, contact the Mayor’s Office at 205-424-4060.

Bessemer industry/businesses in the news:

Amazon announcement by WVTM

Amazon announces first Alabama fulfillment center to be built in Bessemer

Downtown Bessemer chosen as Opportunity Zone by Gov. Ivey, U.S. Treasury

Steyr Arms to add manufacturing at Alabama operation in $2.9 million expansion

Northern Beltline to make $26.7 billion economic impact after completion: Study. (Beltline will intersect in Bessemer)

Milo’s expands Bessemer campus.

Building BLOX: Alabama architecture firm makes mark on healthcare with innovative process 

Flex-N-Gate to expand Bessemer facility, add 107 jobs

Important links:

Bessemer Airport

Bessemer Industrial Development Board

Bessemer Area Chamber of Commerce

Bessemer Business Incubators