After Missing Two Big Ones, Marion Still Vying for New Industry

MARION, AR - Losses to other states in the final or semifinal stages of site selection for two major industries haven't stopped Arkansas economic development leaders from working to get a new major plant.

Citing air quality concerns, Toyota opted to build its Highlander sports utility vehicle plant in Tupelo, Mississippi, rather than Marion, Arkansas.  And German steelmaker ThyssenKrupp AG eliminated a nearby site in Mississippi County from its short list of plants, instead focusing on Alabama and Louisiana.

Kay Brockwell, director of economic development in Marion, says Arkansas could be picked for a parts plant once Toyota begins to build its plant in Tupelo.  Also, if Toyota decides to build another vehicle plant in North America, Brockwell says she'll show the Marion site again.

Brockwell says she'd be happy to show Toyota the Marion site again, provided another industry doesn't pick the site first.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)