The Phillips 66 land in Louisville is located along U.S. Highway 36, near Northwest Parkway.

Louisville leaders make ‘strong statement’ in support of Medtronic

LOUISVILLE — Louisville leaders were effusive Tuesday night in their support of Medtronic Inc., a Dublin-based medical-device manufacturer  now approved for a $1.5-million local tax incentive package to build a new corporate campus in the city.

Medtronic is eyeing the Phillips 66 land in Louisville for a new operation that could eventually employ 3,000 workers. Medtronic would invest $133 million in a 450,000- to 500,000-square-foot corporate campus on 90 to 100 acres of the site, a 430-acre property located at U.S. Highway 36 and Northwest Parkway.

The state has already approved a $24.8 million incentive package for the project, for which Colorado is competing with Minnesota and Tennessee.

“We’ve wondered who it was the state has been talking to for a long time,” Mayor Robert Muckle said. “We are pleased to have learned who it is.”

The city council unanimously approved the local incentives.

Should Medtronic accept Louisville’s offer, the company will receive:

  • Building-permit-fee rebates of $392,700.
  • Building-use-tax rebate of $885,000.
  • Consumer-use/sales-tax rebate of $180,000.

I hope this a strong statement for the company,” Muckle said.

Medtronic, which Councilwoman Susan Loo referred to Tuesday as a “primary employer par excellence,” employs about 2,000 workers in Colorado, including 500 elsewhere in Louisville. The company also has operations in Boulder, Denver and Parker.

“We have been members of the Louisville community for years now and know it’s a great place to live and work,” Medtronic global facilities vice president James Driessen said. “We hope to continue to be part of the community and are evaluating options to increase our presence.”

Councilman Dennis Maloney said he has heard from constituents with concerns about whether tax incentives are an effective way to add jobs and boost the local economy. While those concerns are valid, Maloney said, he’s confident in this particular deal.

“We’ve had a 400-acre plot of land that has been vacant and not fully utilized for many years,” he said. “So this is a time when I think [tax incentives] will pay off.”

The Phillips 66 property formerly housed the corporate headquarters for Storage Technology Corp. and has lain dormant for years. StorageTek sold to Sun Microsystems Inc. in 2005 for $4.1 billion., and those workers eventually were moved to Sun’s Broomfield campus. Sun was acquired by Oracle Corp. in 2010.

In 2008, Sun sold the 430-acre property to ConocoPhillips for $55.6 million. The energy company announced plans to build a clean-energy research campus that would eventually create 7,000 jobs. But the subsequent spinoff of Phillips 66 (NYSE: PSX) from ConocoPhillips brought an end to those plans, and the property was put on the market.

The land was one of the sites submitted by the state of Colorado as a potential location for the Amazon HQ2 project, with the land under contract to Bancroft Capital. That deal never materialized.

Brue Baukol Capital Partners, a Denver-based real estate investment and development firm, submitted documents to the city of Louisville in late June to transform the acreage into a mixed-use development that would include 3.4 million square feet, including a 1,500-unit senior-living and transition-care facility, along with office, retail and hotel uses.