Shelby Economic Development Opportunities Report September 2023
Nestled in the heart of Richland County, Ohio, the City of Shelby might be small in size, but it boasts a business landscape that reflects resilience, innovation, and community spirit.
Shelby was founded in 1818 by James Gamble, who named the City after Isaac Shelby, a hero of the American Revolution and the first governor of Kentucky. The City grew as a result of its location on the railroad and its proximity to agricultural and manufacturing resources.
Welcome to Shelby!
Nature lovers will enjoy snow skiing Snow Trails, hiking the Shelby Wetlands, lodging at Mohican State Park, or boating at Charles Mill Lake Park, Pleasant Hill Lake, and Clear Fork Reservoir. All these locations and Lake Erie are within an hour’s drive.
Golf enthusiasts will enjoy two local courses, Shelby Crossings and Woody Ridge Golf Course. Motorsports fans will love the proximity to the internationally known Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course and Driving School and NHRA-sponsored Summit Motorsports Park. Roller coaster enthusiasts won’t mind the hour-long drive to Cedar Point Amusement Park, “the roller coaster capital of the world.”
Like many small towns and cities, Shelby has a close-knit community with strong local pride. Residents often gather for events, especially Friday night football, festivals such as Shelby Bicycle Days, and initiatives that promote community engagement such as the farmers market downtown every Saturday in the summer. What sets Shelby apart, is its location.
Location, Location, Location!
Shelby’s strategic location is a prime reason companies look to this City as a potential relocation site and/or expansion opportunity.
From the heart of Shelby, State Routes 61, 96, and 39 provide easy access to such thoroughfares as US 30, Interstate 71, and the Ohio Turnpike (US 80/Interstate 90). The City has easy access by ground transportation to Cleveland, Columbus, Akron, and Canton, all within 90 minutes; Toledo is within 2 hours; and Cincinnati, Detroit, Pittsburgh, and Parkersburg, WV, are only a short 3-hour drive away.
CSX and Ashland Railway (a short line service) have lines and serve area manufacturers. Shelby’s Airport offers two hangars to house up to 17 planes. The Mansfield Lahm Regional Airport, home to the 179th Airlift Wing (AW) of the Ohio Air National Guard, is located along State Route 13 and is only a 20-minute drive from Shelby.
Commercial airlines are available at area airports including Cleveland Hopkins International, John Glenn (Port Columbus) International, and Akron-Canton Regional Airport – each about 75 miles away.
Historically, Shelby’s economy has been tied to manufacturing, particularly in the automotive and railroad industry sectors. The City was home to the Shelby Cycle Company, which became known for producing the iconic Shelby Bicycle. Shelby is also known as the home of the seamless tube and boasts the first seamless tube produced in the USA. Shelby is still home to multiple tube manufacturers including global powerhouse ArcelorMittal. Manufacturing continues to be a cornerstone of Shelby’s economy. The City’s strategic location, with easy access to major transportation routes, attracts manufacturers looking to optimize distribution networks.
Its businesses, both old and new, have woven a tapestry of economic diversity, innovation, and community engagement. As Shelby continues to evolve, its business landscape will undoubtedly play a pivotal role in shaping its future, reflecting the resilience and optimism of this thriving community. With a Strategic Plan and Economic Development Action Plan in place, and recently revitalized Downtown, this forward-looking community is poised and ready to step into the future.
An important part of this formula for success is that the City works closely with the Richland Community Development Group, the local Community Improvement Corporation (CIC), Team NEO, and JobsOhio to provide a business-friendly environment for development, retention, expansion, and attraction.
The Richland Area Chamber & Economic Development team is a driving force for growth in the region. Richland County is the home of many world-class industries, ranging from advanced manufacturing to healthcare. The City and the Chamber’s economic development office have the business-friendly approach and incentives needed to continue the area’s solid growth well into the future.
Of particular significance is the support provided by Team Northeast Ohio (Team NEO). TeamNEO is one of Ohio’s most dynamic and innovative economic development partnerships, representing the eighteen (18) counties that comprise Northeast Ohio. The region boasts:
- A workforce of more than 2 million and is home to 40% of Ohio’s Fortune 1000 companies (the most Fortune 1000 companies of any region in Ohio);
- More than 200 global companies;
- Recent counts list approximately 800 world business headquarters in the Region.
Northeast Ohio’s central location reaches the largest number of consumers in a 250-mile/400-km radius compared with any other metro market in the U.S.A. Businesses that call Shelby home include:
- ArcelorMittal Tubular Products
- Carton Service – Pharma Packaging Solutions
- Stanley Black and Decker
- Phillips Mfg.& Tower Co.
- RS Hanline Group
- Milliron Recycling – Blue Scope
- Custom Control Technologies
- Lloyd Rebar
- Cooper Enterprises
Shelby’s Central Ohio Industrial Park houses 2.5 million square feet of warehouse space with 15 buildings under roof, 228 truck docks, and available rail docks. Shelby also has a newly established development park dedicated to technology innovation.
Shelby is not just a place for large corporations; it’s also a haven for small businesses. The community’s strong support for local entrepreneurs has fostered a welcoming environment for startups and family-owned ventures. With initiatives like business incubators, mentorship programs, and networking events, Shelby provides a nurturing ecosystem for businesses to thrive.
North Central State College provides two-year, community-based education, baccalaureate, and graduate degree completion programs through its university partners. A focal point of the college is the James W. Kehoe Center for Advanced Learning. The Center is known for its statewide workforce development programs, impressive conference facilities, and training labs. It houses a nationally recognized Integrated Systems Technology laboratory and the regional Advanced Manufacturing Tool & Die Center, as well as EnterpriseOhio Network’s Skillsmax Center.
North Central State College’s main campus and nursing college as well as The Ohio State University and Mount Vernon Nazarene University’s branch campuses, are less than 20 minutes away in Mansfield, Ohio.
The Pioneer Career and Technology Center provides career training opportunities to high school and adult students. In addition to its vocational training, Pioneer also has a Corporate & Industry Training Services department with an authorized OSHA trainer.
Shelby is a city on the rise, with strong local revitalization efforts and a proven industrial strength. Shelby is open for businesses and people looking for that special right location to help them reach their goals for success. Why not come to Shelby and check us out? We’ll be glad to show you around so you too can see all that Shelby has to offer and our robust plans for the future. Just give us a call or stop by. Chances are, you’ll be glad you did.
Site opportunities include:
- 500,000 sq. ft. of industrial space
- 820,000 sq. ft. of office, industrial, and warehouse space
- 46 acres of industrial and vacant land
- 46 acres of industrial space
- 23 acres of industrial space
- 25,80 acres of vacant land
Public Power and AMP
Public power utilities are not-for-profit, community-owned electric systems that work to provide the highest quality, most reliable power to residents and businesses. They are a part of the communities and focus on what is best for the people and businesses they serve.
American Municipal Power, Inc. (AMP) is the nonprofit wholesale power supplier and services provider for 133 members in the states of Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia; as well as the Delaware Municipal Electric Corporation, a joint action agency in Smyrna, Delaware. On behalf of our members, AMP deploys a diverse renewable generation portfolio along with environmentally responsible programs and services as part of a corporate commitment to sustainability.