In the latest expansion announced in St. Charles Parish, the Planning Commission unanimously approved a 23-lot second phase for the Esperanza Business Park in Luling.
The project, which also requires council approval, came up for a vote at Monday’s meeting, but was tabled to allow council members time to further review the project that would make land available for business or industrial growth.
Debbie Vial, owner of Esperanza Land LLC in Luling, said an increasing number of inquiries about buying or leasing land in the park, particularly by suppliers and vendors associated with River Parish companies seeking space close to recently announced expansions in the parish, prompted the park’s second phase of the development.
“We’ve seen the inquiries about the property in the park have continued to increase in the last five to seven years,” Vial said. “In the past two years, things have really started to improve.”
Established in 2006, Vial said Esperanza Business Park started with 20 lots on about 85 acres. Increasing demand for lots in the park, which has left few available, triggered the move to expand.
“We had a lot of activity in Phase 1,” Vial said. “It’s a combination of business retention, as well as business expansion of existing companies and attraction of new businesses in St. Charles Parish.”
The project site, nearly 86 acres, is about 900 feet west of Judge Edward Dufresne Parkway and adjacent to the north of the Union Pacific Railroad right-of-way.
Danny Hebert, with Civil and Environmental Consulting, described the project site as being on the street tying to Judge Edward Dufresne Parkway to allow “a looping type of traffic flow.”
Hebert told the commission the plat lies in the existing right-of-way of the parkway.
The parish Department of Public Works and Wastewater recommended project approval contingent upon receiving the preliminary plat.
The business park is zoned for light industrial use allowing for office use, a variety of industrial uses that include technology and research activities, as well as ancillary uses such as shipping offices and office supply.
“I think overall the economy has improved,” Vial said. “Economic factors and local expansion projects have generated the need for suppliers and spin-off companies to locate in the area.”
Vial said she’s optimistic additional phases could come with the extension of Judge Edward Parkway in the future. She added, “We’ll have continued growth in phases as there is a demand.”