WINTERSVILLE - With its Cadiz offices filled up, MarkWest Energy Partners has shifted regional land office operations to a storefront on Main Street.
"We bought the (Cadiz) building last year, but we were slowly getting squeezed out by all the construction and operations people," said Chris Hagan, senior land manager. "It was apparent we needed more space for our land office."
Hagan said they'll have about 15 people working out of the Wintersville office, located at 500 Main St., "but we oversee about 100 people working in the field" throughout the region.
OFFICE OPEN — Celebrating the opening of MarkWest Energy Partners new land office in Wintersville are, from left, Chris Hagan, senior land manager; Bonnie Malpassi, office manager; and Paul Carlson, land manager. The new land office is located at 500 Main St. -- Linda Harris
"Our customers do the drilling for natural gas and byproducts," he said. "We take their products to market."
MarkWest is investing heavily in Eastern Ohio's Utica shale play, including a $500 million cryogenic natural gas processing facility in Cadiz, a fractionater in Jewett, other processing facilities in Noble and Tuscarawas counties and pipelines
"This industry is over a hundred years old, but the volume of gas products up here isn't something anybody imagined five or 10 years ago," said Hagan, pointing out that Marcellus and Utica shale production have "brought Ohio and Pennsylvania back to the forefront of some of the best production volumes in the world."
"It's good for our economy, it's good for our national security," he said. "It's injecting a lot of wealth into our local economy."
Hagan said they began moving into the Wintersville storefront in July, hanging the sign only a week or two ago.
"This isn't a retail operation. Mostly, it will just be contractors coming in. We'll have a lot of meetings here."
He said about half of the 15 people working at the new office hail from Ohio or West Virginia.