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Groundbreaking ceremony held for new Exxon Mobil plastics plant

Most officials and community leaders agree it's only a matter of time before even more companies come calling.

PORTLAND, Texas — Community leaders, politicians and Exxon executives gathered Thursday to mark the start of construction on the multibillion-dollar plastics plant that will soon be going up between Portland and Gregory.

Construction is now well underway on the $7 billion petrochemical complex that Gulf Coast Growth Ventures is building. A groundbreaking ceremony was held Thursday on the property, which once just consisted of cotton fields.

Exxon Mobil joined together with SABIC to build the plastics manufacturing facility. It's going to employ some 6,000 construction workers along with 600 new permanent jobs on site when the work is complete.

"We have got a great way of doing business. We have established relationships with our contracting community," Gulf Coast Growth Ventures President Bill Cheek said. "We took Sabic, Exxon Mobil, and we merged the very best people together to have a world-class project team."

San Patricio County Judge David Krebs was also excited to finally see the groundbreaking take place.

"You know this is a regional effort that we did here to get Exxon in here, and it's going to help everybody out," Krebs said. "Gregory and Portland are going to see the big benefits of it but Corpus and all of the surrounding communities."

Another interested party in the project is Corpus Christi Mayor Joe McComb. He said in a few years the City will start seeing $50 million in taxes rolling in from just that project alone. He also said hat lately there have been several companies looking at putting in billion-dollar projects of their own here.

"So fully before the end of the year we might hear another one or two announcements for this area, but you don't want to over excite yourself, but we're very optimistic at this point," McComb said.

Most officials and community leaders agree it's only a matter of time before even more companies come calling.

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