MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — Hemisphere Design Works, a giant in the work of kayak manufacturing, is again expanding in Muskegon.
“How fun to get to promote being home to the world’s largest kayak manufacturer,” Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce President Cindy Larsen said. “We’re excited and we’re going to do everything we can to make sure people know about it.”
On Wednesday, the Muskegon City Commission approved the sale of land at Port City Industrial Park for Hemisphere, formerly named KL Outdoor, to build a nearly 500,000-square-foot distribution facility.
“They will be investing millions of dollars in Muskegon,” Larsen told 24 Hour News 8. “There’ll be jobs, there’ll be all kinds of investment, there’ll be a lot of attention that they bring to Muskegon.”
Through a development group, Hemisphere paid $465,000 for 22 acres at the industrial park east of US-31 near Laketon Avenue. The company wants to add another 15 acres.
“The company is very optimistic about the market growth potential and so they will continue to add jobs over the next decade,” Larsen said.
The distribution center should be up and running by March 2019. Details about exactly how many jobs will be added aren’t yet known.
The company announced last August it was moving its headquarters to downtown Muskegon. Larsen said it makes sense for the kayak maker to stay local.
“We’ve always had this amazing water infrastructure here, in terms of 70 lakes, 400 miles of river, and now people are starting to figure it out. They’re super excited about the idea of being able to live here and work here,” Larsen said.