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BY DONNIE JOHNSTON
Hardwood Artisans is moving its manufacturing site from Woodbridge to Culpeper County and bringing about 20 new jobs with it.
The custom furniture maker has already started to move into its new 41,000-square-foot facility in the Culpeper Industrial Airpark near Elkwood and plans to be in full operation there by the end of November.
"We needed to expand and prepare for the future," said Julianne Yurek, marketing director for the firm. "We're outgrowing our present space, and the cost of acquiring new land in Woodbridge is going up. Culpeper seemed ideal for us."
Yurek added that some of Hardwood Artisans' current employees live in Stafford County, and the drive to Elkwood won't take much longer than to Woodbridge.
She also said that the company plans to hire new employees from the Culpeper area and right now is in the market for an experienced upholsterer.
"Our company should have a positive economic impact on Culpeper," she said, noting that some of the current employees may choose to relocate and buy homes in the area.
Hardwood Artisans began in 1976 as a two-man operation making loft and platform beds. Today the company boasts about 1,000 different high-end products that can be built to the customer's specifications.
The company now has showrooms in Arlington, Alexandria, Rockville, Fairfax and Woodbridge. The Woodbridge showroom will close when the company moves and a new one will open in Culpeper.
Yurek said that Hardwood Artisans will be bringing customers into Culpeper for special events, which should help stimulate the local economy.
"We are also planning many community events like giving tours and holding barbecues," Yurek said.
"We are most pleased to learn that Hardwood Artisans is planning to locate to our Industrial Airpark," said Culpeper County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Chase. "This industry will add greatly to the varied current industries there, as well as create new jobs for the county. They are a good fit for Culpeper."