After years of negotiations and legal battles, Titan America LLC announced today that they are pulling out of a project that would have brought a new cement plant to Castle Hayne.
According to a news release, economics was the main factor in the company’s decision.
“Our decision to suspend construction on the cement plant in Castle Hayne is driven by basic project economics,” said Bill Zarkalis, Titan America’s CEO, in the release. “The pace of demand growth in the specific markets does not seem adequate to justify the addition of substantial new production capacity – more so because the costs to construct a new cement plant in the United States have risen substantially in the past few years. Finally, the overall risk profile of the project has worsened as new coastal capacity in North Carolina could be vulnerable to cement imports, considering the strong U.S. dollar, the global cement supply situation and low ocean freight costs.”
The Norfolk, Va.-based company planned to build on the site of the former Ideal Cement plant, located between Holly Shelter Road and the Northeast Cape Fear River. In 2008, the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners gave the company $4 million in tax incentives to bring the project to the area, but economics have changed since then.
“Looking to the future, Titan America continues to evaluate opportunities for accelerated and sustainable growth,” Zarkalis stated. “The Castle Hayne option simply does not meet our economic criteria.”