HILLSBOROUGH – Medline Industries is building a new distribution center in Mebane, investing $65 million and bringing 250 jobs to the region.

That figure is expected to rocket to around 726 jobs by 2029, the company said.

“Those are projections based on the rate of growth, not just here in North Carolina, but the growth of healthcare in the region,” said Blair Klein, Medline’s vice president of Corporate Communications, shortly after the announcement at the Richard Whitted Building in Hillsborough on Thursday morning

“There’s a lot of need in this region.”

Based out of Illinois, Medline is a family-owned business and one of the nation’s largest medical supply manufacturer and distributors.

The project, which is expected to break ground as early as October, will be located on 173 acres on the north side of West Ten Road, just east of Buckhorn Road next Preston Loop, in what is called the Buckhorn Road Economic Development Zone.

It is expected to be complete by late 2020.

Calling the location “ideal,” Klein added the firm picked the area because of its closeness to healthcare providers. “Being able to be right here in North Carolina, which has such close proximity to many other metropolitan areas in the Southeast, makes a lot of sense.”

Another perk: access to an educated workforce. “We were impressed with the educational opportunities in the region, and that’s not always the case.”

The 250 full-time jobs include 214 warehouse, 20-35 drivers and 10 management – with benefits and an average $35,486 annual salary (not counting management).

The firm is believed to have received nearly $4.4 million in city, county and state incentives to land the deal.

North Carolina Commerce Secretary Anthony Copeland called the package “robust,” but also highlighted the fact that the development will be built on a rural census tract, which qualifies it to be treated as a rural area.

He sees more projects like these coming to the area.

“Since [Gov. Roy Cooper] took office, we have announced close to 55,000 jobs in the state in two years – which is way above where they were, on average, in the last 10 years.”

He cites the controversial HB2 bill that was passed under Gov. Pat McCrory for those “lackluster” years. The bill, which barred people from using the restroom that corresponds with their gender identity, has since been partially repealed under Gov. Cooper.

“We’re well on restoring our image on moving forward with companies like this, the big public and European companies,” he said. “It’s lifted as an obstacle and freed us up to return to the image we had.”

This is the second new jobs announcement for Mebane and Orange County over the last two months, the earlier one being some 400 jobs from ABB.