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Twist Bioscience is slated to invest $70 million in Wilsonville; the company will receive $597,000 tax rebate in first year.

COURTESY PHOTO - Twist Bioscience holding a silicon chip used for DNA synthesization.

After a previous investment zone program failed to attract the industrial investment the city of Wilsonville desired, the municipal government's new and more flexible program may soon bear fruit.

During a meeting Monday, June 7, the Wilsonville City Council approved the first step in an agreement with the synthetic DNA company Twist Bioscience for the company to receive tax rebates as part of the city's Wilsonville Investment Now Program. The city funds the program by establishing an urban renewal district, which allows the city to freeze the property tax revenue on the site and provide rebates from the taxes associated with increases in property value due to the development.

The biotechnology company plans to occupy a 190,000-square-foot facility at ParkWorks Industry Center on Southwest Parkway Avenue and indicates its new facility in town will result in 400 jobs and $70 million in capital investment. The company, which makes synthetic DNA for uses like therapeutics, diagnostics, agriculture and data storage, plans to use the facility to produce antibody therapeutics and gene-manufacturing technology.

The council's vote Monday established the conditions for the creation of the tax increment financing zone.

Wilsonville Economic Development Manager Jordan Vance said the project "will strengthen the local economy with significant capital investment and the creation of new jobs."

The agreement requires approval from other taxing agencies that will be affected by the subsidies and review by the Wilsonville Planning Commission. If it is approved, Twist will receive a tax rebate of approximately $597,000 in the first year of the program and additional rebates for the next six years.

Twist easily qualified for the Wilsonville program, which uses a rating system that takes into account how much money a business is investing in the community and how many high-wage jobs it will produce, among other factors.

Mayor Julie Fitzgerald said Twist's investment was worth celebrating.

"This is one of the most significant economic investments in the entire region," she said.

Wilsonville's previous tax increment financing program applied to six sites and no business qualified for it. However, the city expanded the program in 2020 to make criteria more flexible and allow the zones to go anywhere in town with approval from agencies.

The plan is slated to be finalized in August.


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