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Attorney questions focus of Kinetic Park

By Bryan Chambers, The Herald-Dispatch, August 20, 2007

A local attorney questioned the Huntington Municipal Development Authority about whether the tenants coming into Kinetic Park are setting the wrong tone for future development.

The 96-acre Kinetic Park was originally envisioned as a research park -- a nucleus of technology-based companies. A large hill was leveled for $9 million om grants and $7.5 million in loans. The upper portion of the park was to hold office and research buildings, while the lower level was to hold retail stores and restaurants. The focus in the late 1990s was technology-related companies -- but the dot-com bubble burst. The focus of late has been biotechnology and health care companies.

The top part of Kinetic Park is holding some businesses -- but not what was originally intended. Huntington Dermatology, relocating from another part of Huntington, will be opening soon. And gynecologist Allan Chamberlain will be expanding his practice in a new one-story building.

The financing package for Kinetic Park restricts the types of businesses that can locate on the upper level. A $1 million grant from the federal Economic Development Association requires that any businesses there must be technology-based.

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