Under the Dome

McCrory comment ties mystery United Kingdom trip to Rocky Mount industrial site

Gov. Pat McCrory dropped some strong hints Thursday about why he traveled to the United Kingdom last month for an economic development trip.

While in Rocky Mount promoting historic preservation tax credits, a reporter asked McCrory for an update on the Kingsboro Industrial Site, a 1,200-acre “megasite” there. The property is one of three in North Carolina being marketed for a major automotive plant. Would an automaker fit there, the governor was asked?

“It is perfect for it,” McCrory said. “It’s a very good site, and we’re in ongoing recruitment mode, and I won’t say anything other than that.”

But then he did.

“I don’t travel overseas for nothing, especially sitting in the back of a plane,” he said. “It’s a long flight.”

News reports have said both Volvo and Land Rover are looking at southeastern states for a new manufacturing facility.

The governor gave the Rocky Mount leaders and business owners a taste of his sales pitch for their city.

“Rocky Mount is close to a major economic revival,” he said. “I’m recruiting business to the Rocky Mount region because of the close proximity to the airport in Raleigh, to rail lines, to ports.

“Another thing you have in Rocky Mount, you have some great land to bring in your industry, that major economic regions do not have. ... I would like you to know I’m selling that land right now.”