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New Mexico State University

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West Mesa Industrial Park Plan

LAS CRUCES -- A new study from New Mexico State University's Cooperative Extension Service is helping Las Cruces City planners find the types of industries that could work well together in a new industrial park. The Target Industry Study, a crucial component of the master plan for the West Mesa Industrial Park, was recently completed.

"The West Mesa Industrial Park is already being developed," said Bob Coppedge, Extension economist and author of the plan. "The objective of the Target Industry Study is to simply find a good match between the community and industry."

The study determined what types of industries are potential candidates for location in the area.

The West Mesa Park is located on I-10, west of Las Cruces. A truck stop, a nursery, a trucking facility and a milk processing plant are already situated in the park.

"We are recommending five categories of industry", Coppedge said. "These are groups of businesses, not any particular industry or company."

The five categories of industry endorsed by the study are food processing, nurseries and greenhouses, metalworking and machinery, electronic and analytical instruments, and warehousing and transportation.

Las Cruces is strategically located to Western markets, Coppedge said. "We're on two major interstates, within a day's drive of a number of major markets, and our proximity to Mexico is a real asset. Because of this, industries involved in wholesaling, warehousing, packaging and transporting products should find the industrial park appealing."

Food processing is an enterprise that seems particularly promising to the study's authors.

"The existing milk processing facility is expanding," Coppedge said, "and we think the potential for other types of food processing, including specialty food processing, is high."

Processing of crops grown in other areas also is a possibility. Crops from other areas of New Mexico, other states or even from Mexico could be shipped to Las Cruces for processing, Coppedge said.

"There are several industrial parks in the Las Cruces area, but all have their different functions", Coppedge said. "The West Mesa Park will be looking at relatively light industry. By planning for this type of industry, the city will be able to better organize things like water mains, roads, power lines and railroad spurs, to the business sites."