By LOU WILIN
Construction of a six-story, 120,000-square-foot headquarters for Marathon Petroleum’s pipeline subsidiary, MPLX LP, will start in November and be finished in spring 2016.
The building will be across Hardin Street from Marathon Petroleum headquarters and connected by an enclosed walkway on the third floor. A site plan for the building was approved Thursday by the Findlay City Planning Commission.
Marathon Petroleum is not disclosing the cost of the MPLX building. It is part of an $80 million addition of two office buildings and two multi-level parking garages to Marathon Petroleum’s downtown complex.
Marathon Petroleum will be adding 150 MPLX employees by year-end 2017 and they will be among the workers in the new building.
Oil pipelines are in demand, so they are being planned and built as Middle North America booms with lots of cheaper crude oil. Refiners are rushing to buy the crude oil to turn a good profit.
Marathon spun off some of its pipeline operations nearly two years ago into the publicly-traded MPLX, pleasing investors. It offers them a piece of the oil business which earns more steady profits than refining. Because of that, it pays bigger dividends regularly, which investors like.
It also offers investors growth prospects. Marathon Petroleum can sell more pipelines or barges or other assets to MPLX, which will help it earn yet more profits.
Downtown Findlay will get a big lift from Marathon Petroleum’s and MPLX’s growth.
“We’re excited about what the future of downtown Findlay is going to look like when the plans are complete,” Mayor Lydia Mihalik said.
Separately Thursday, the planning commission approved a plan for a 1,500-square-foot addition to Litter Landing’s drop-off building for recyclables, and construction of a 3,200-square-foot storage building. The storage building will be at the west edge of the property. The drop-off building will be expanded on its north side.
Construction will start this fall and be completed by Thanksgiving.
Two smaller buildings near East Sandusky Street will be removed this fall to expand a parking area from several spaces to 24 spaces. The parking addition will be finished in spring 2015.
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