LOCK HAVEN - Another major player in the natural gas rich Marcellus shale will set up shop in Clinton County, Pa., working to create an estimated 250 jobs to serve the ever-expanding industry, according to local economic development officials.
The Clinton County Economic Partnership has announced that Baker Hughes Oilfield Operations has acquired 37 acres at the Lamar Township Business Park near state Route 220 and Interstate 80, just south of Lock Haven, to build an office and construct a pumping services center to work with natural gas exploration clients in the region.
The project, Partnership officials said, could mean up to 250 new jobs.
With Baker Hughes setting up a sort of regional headquarters here, the firm is expected to hire about 60 office workers, while most of the remaining employees will be involved in the pumping and hydraulic fracturing of gas wells, according to Partnership President Mike Flanagan.
Baker Hughes, based in Houston, Texas, and its contractor recently began site work at the park.
It is expected that the plant will be up and running by the end of 2012.
"We welcome Baker Hughes to the community," said Gary Gregory, chairman of the Partnership's executive board. "We are glad they decided to choose the Lamar Township Business Park. This is a major project and will mean a lot of new jobs."
The project will serve as a base for six pumping service truck fleets that serve clients in a 100-mile radius.
The site will become home to approximately 98,000-square feet of buildings consisting of a 25,000-square-foot office, a fuel building, a truck wash building, acid storage warehouse, drum and tote warehouse, cement warehouse and a shared vehicle maintenance workshop.
Baker Hughes is considered a top-tier oilfield service company with a century-long track record, Flanagan said. The company has more than 53,000 employees in 80 countries.
The Partnership worked with representatives from the Houston office to secure the deal.
"The Baker Hughes officials are the utmost professionals," said Flanagan. "They have been a pleasure to work with, as have representatives from A. Martini & Co., the contractor for the project.
"This is a big win for the county, and another example of the positive economic impact the Marcellus shale and natural gas industry is having on our area," Flanagan added. "We have already been contacted by others that may service Baker Hughes."