NAUGATUCK — One company is moving forward with plans for expansion despite what its owner described as a “tepid” economy.
H.J. Bushka & Sons bought property on Great Hill Road in the Naugatuck Industrial Park about five years ago, when they economy was doing really well.
The company planned to move in a year after buying the land, but “We kind of held of and held off and held off,” said co-owner Eric Bushka, who owns the company with his brother Randy Bushka and his father, Jim Bushka.
This year, they decided not to hold off any longer.
Workers recently started grading the property, with plans to put in the foundations in the next month or two. They plan to start building the structure in the spring and move in a year and a half to two years from now, Bushka said.
Hopefully, by the time the building is complete, the economy will be better, Bushka said.
“(Business is) definitely better than last year, but not like it should be,” Bushka said.
Dave Prendergast, CEO of the Naugatuck Economic Development Corporation, worked with Bushka to purchase the property certifying them for enterprise zone benefits.
“It’s good to see a local company be able to expand and create more jobs,” Prendergast said.
Companies in the Industrial Park are entitled to a five-year, 80-percent abatement on the increase in real property taxes on improvements to the property and a 25-percent corporate business tax credit.
Bushka will join over 50 other businesses in the park, which has nearly reached its limit of developable sites. The NEDC is currently working on revised zoning regulations, which would open up new plots in the area.
The company has been at its current 550 High St. location since 1994.
Bushka said it has outgrown its current location, which is set in a mixed industrial and residential zone with narrow roads and private homes nearby.
“We’re kind of congested here at this location,” Bushka said.
The industrial park will provide a larger, more customer-accessible location from which to sell lumber, hardware, and other building materials, Bushka said.
The new location will triple the land area and double the actual building space for the business and include a showroom for kitchens, doors, and windows, Bushka said. Currently, the business is housed in a 13,000-square-foot building on a 0.3 acre plot of land. The new location will feature a 15,000-square-foot building plus an 8,000-square-foot storage shed. The new site is about six acres, but only three acres are usable for building.
“They’re in a very difficult location right now. They’re stretched to the limit on that site. This would make it much more convenient for their clients and customers,” Prendergast said.
Mayor Robert Mezzo welcomed Bushka’s expansion.
“The company is a long-time member of our corporate community with a history of success and we’re excited that they’re expanding their operation and they chose to do so in our industrial park,” he said.