Improving Business in the Wilmington Region


Local Millwork Supply Company will be the Second Tenant at Blue Clay Business Park

November 2, 2023 (Wilmington, N.C.) – Coastal Millwork Supply Co. and its sister company, Risley Padula Construction Inc., closed today on their purchase of 5.5 acres at Blue Clay Business Park in New Hanover County. The two homegrown firms supply and install interior doors, trim, stair parts and cabinets to single- and multi-family residential builders in Greater Wilmington and other markets. The move will give the companies additional capacity to meet growing demand for its products and services.

“We’ve been part of the community since my brother Steve and partner Bob Padula founded the company 25 years ago, and have outgrown our current space,” said owner and founder Jim Risley. The companies will construct 62,ooo square-feet of manufacturing and office space at their new location, which has ample surrounding space to accommodate future growth. “We were eager to remain in New Hanover County and really liked the site at Blue Clay Business Park.”

Coastal and Risley Padula currently employ a workforce of about 50, and they intend to grow that number to as many as 75 once their new location is operational at the end of 2024. While the firms supply multi-family residential builders as far away as the Triangle and Myrtle Beach, the bulk of their work is in Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender counties. “Blue Clay Business Park is central to all three counties,” Risley says. The firms will vacate their current location off S. 13th Street near Greenfield Lake.

Will Leonard of Cape Fear Commercial represented the company in its purchase of property at the county-owned park. Risley credits Leonard, along with senior New Hanover County officials, with facilitating the transaction. Also smoothing the project was Wilmington Business Development, Risley adds. “WBD has always been very responsive to our needs,” he says. “Our relationship with them will continue well after the project is complete.”

Today’s transaction is the second acquisition at Blue Clay this year. In September, Francini Inc., a leading importer and distributor of natural and engineered stone products, closed on six acres there for what will house a $10 million warehouse and customer showroom. Working closely with Wilmington Business Development, New Hanover County began initial surveys and engineering work at the 120-acre property in 2017. It undertook exhaustive assessment a year later by Duke Energy’s Site Readiness Program. The site, located less than five miles from I-40, sits adjacent a CSX rail line and is within convenient reach of both Wilmington International Airport and the Port of Wilmington. Coastal Millwork/Risley Padula’s expansion will take place on the northeast side of the park, taking advantage of that section’s visibility and accessibility to Blue Clay Road.

“Creating the physical space to allow businesses an opportunity to grow was the focus when establishing our business parks here in New Hanover County and today is another example of that being the correct choice,” said Bill Rivenbark, Chair of the New Hanover County Board of Commissioners. “Coastal Millwork, a local company with a longstanding reputation, now has space to expand its operations at the Blue Clay Business Park, which will in turn create more employment opportunities for our community. We look forward to seeing Coastal Millwork thrive in this new space and we’re excited for more announcements like this in the years to come.”

County officials and WBD are now working with McKim & Creed on plans to install the park’s utility infrastructure. Coastal Millwork and Risley Padula intend to break ground at the site in early 2024. Also partnering with them on the project will be Hipp Architecture, Paramounte Engineering and McKinley Building. All are Wilmington companies.

Chad Hodges, chief operating officer of McKinley Building, called the success of Coastal Millwork and Risley Padula evidence that Wilmington remains a fertile environment for entrepreneurs. “We have had the pleasure to know and work with Coastal Millwork and Risley Padula for years and look forward to partnering with these two growing companies and creating the space that will enable them to meet their strategic business goals,” Hodges said.

The announcement sustains a winning streak for Greater Wilmington’s manufacturing sector. In September, German metal processor Kesseböhmer broke ground on a $29 million facility off U.S. Highway 421 that will house its consolidated North American operations. The family-owned company supplies retail display and kitchen storage solutions to U.S. and international markets. In October of 2022, GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy announced it would invest more than $85 million in an expansion at its site not far from Blue Clay Business Park. Cardinal Foods, Paperfoam, Pacon and Polyhose each announced relocations and expansions in Greater Wilmington over the last five years.

“Greater Wilmington is not only an ideal destination for companies from all over the world, but a region with a proven reputation for supporting the success of existing companies like Coastal Millwork and Risley Padula,” said Scott Satterfield, chief executive office at Wilmington Business Development. “Key to our growing and retaining top notch businesses like these is having ready-to-go properties that can accommodate the next phase of their growth. I commend our government partners at New Hanover and Pender counties and the City of Wilmington for their willingness to make the necessary investments in keeping our inventory of industrial properties aligned with the needs of tomorrow’s businesses,” Satterfield said.

Founded in 1956, Wilmington Business Development oversees business recruitment and industrial retention for the City of Wilmington, New Hanover County and Pender County. A private, non-profit organization, WBD supports members, partners and allies through an array of technical expertise, leadership resources and value-added business services. For additional information, visit
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