Local Stone lovers haven't been sitting on the sidelines. They've launched a Facebook site that's gotten more than 1,100 "likes" in hopes of showing the brewery that Charlotte should be its new East Coast home.
There is competition, however. Escondido, Calif.-based Stone is the 10th largest craft brewer in the nation and the biggest in southern California. According to this story, other communities from around the Carolinas, including Myrtle Beach, Wilmington, Asheville, Greensboro and Florence, S.C. are all in pursuit of the plant, which could bring an estimated 370 jobs with wages ranging from $12 to $48 an hour. Capital expenditures for the new brewery are projected to exceed $20 million for the initial phase of the brewer's business plan, with revenue projected to exceed $100 million by the fourth year, according to Sam Boykin, spokesman for the partnership.
The company is looking to pick a site and begin construction this year. Asked how many other communities have replied to the brewer's request for proposals, company spokeswoman Sabrina LoPiccolo declined to divulge a number. However, she added: "We definitely have seen quite a bit of interest and are pleased with the amount of proposals we've received."
According to the partnership, hundreds of other communities east of the Mississippi River have expressed interest. "It will take a special site to meet their requirements," Boykin wrote in an email, "and we're confident the Charlotte region is well-suited in terms of infrastructure, location and population density."