Bucks County is very business-friendly, offering many excellent business incentives and assistance programs. Grants, tax credits and job training are readily available, and the county has a skilled and educated workforce of approximately 320,000. Bucks County has easy access to many modes of transportation. TMA Bucks maintains extensive public transit services that create numerous opportunities for local, regional, national and international trade and commerce.
The Lower Bucks County Chamber of Commerce is devoted to supporting and promoting businesses in the Lower Bucks County area. Consisting of more than 1,600 members and representing local businesses of all sizes throughout 22 municipalities in the area, LBCCC is one of only 14 chambers in Pennsylvania that has earned accreditation from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Membership in the Chamber has many benefits; LBCCC works diligently to provide opportunities to help their members grow their businesses.
The Bucks County Economic Development Corporation (BCEDC) and the Bucks County Industrial Development Authority (BCIDA) offer additional resources for companies in Bucks County and play a large role in attracting and retaining area businesses. Services offered include “financing, site selection, research information, education, networking opportunities with economic development agencies, work force development and international trade.” BCEDC and BCIDA help business owners access various economic resources and publications.
The Redevelopment Authority of Bucks County aids businesses, boroughs and townships, homeowners and private developers of Bucks County in the rehabilitation and reuse of depreciated, abandoned or unused commercial and industrial properties. There are several geographic areas that are nearly free of state and local taxes; these benefits are available under the Keystone Opportunity Improvement Zone (KOIZ) Program. The Enterprise Zone Tax Credit Program awards eligible companies and businesses making improvements to properties. Up to $250,000 of tax credits per project, company and year can be granted.
Many properties are available to meet a wide range of industrial and business- related needs. According to the BCEDC, the industrial market in Bucks County contains about 46 million square feet with an approximate 11 percent vacancy rate. Averages for industrial space sale prices span from $35 to $50 per square foot, with average lease rates from $4.00 to $5.00 triple net. Furthermore, the office market in Bucks County is rapidly expanding. With a total of 6million square feet, including approximately 2 million square feet of Class A space, vacancy rates are about 20%. Rates for office rental range from $12 to $18 per square foot (Class B) to $22 to $24 per square foot (Class A).
The USX Industrial Park is situated on 3,000 acres of land in Falls Township. As a KOIZ, the park has created many new jobs for people in the area and has brought economic growth to Lower Bucks County. Keystone Industrial Park sits on 328 acres and is home to several well-known tenants in the fields and industries of publishing, steel, logistics and more.
An innumerable amount of businesses are flourishing in the area. Rohm and Haas, one of the premier manufacturers and suppliers of specialty chemicals, serves international clients in the industries of building and construction, electronics and electronic devices, food and food-related, personal care and household products, industrial processes, packaging and paper, pharmaceutical and medical, transportation and water. Rohm and Haas has facilities located throughout the world, and its corporate headquarters are in Philadelphia. Waste Management also operates in the area and is a company that provides waste and environmental services to nearly 21 million residential, industrial, municipal and commercial customers throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. Besides a commitment toward customers and the environment, Charming Shoppes, Inc., headquartered in Bensalem, is a top specialty apparel retailer and the parent company to Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug, Catherine’s Plus Sizes, Crosstown Traders, Inc. and Petite Sophisticate. Starting in 1940 as a small store in Philadelphia, Charming Shoppes, Inc. has developed into the third-largest women’s specialty apparel retailer in the United States.