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Orange County residents excited, concerned amid upcoming Chevron Phillips plant expansion

Construction has already begun on the refinery, and the company hopes to have everything operational by 2026.

ORANGE, Texas — Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC is bringing an "integrated polymers" facility to Orange and with it comes hundreds of job opportunities.

Chevron Phillips has partnered with QatarEnergy and states the new plant will create more than 500 full-time jobs. The plant is also set to bring more than 4,000 construction jobs to the area as the facility is being built. 

Wednesday's announcement has brought a mixture of excitement and concern to Orange residents. Many are elated to welcome the new plant to their city.

"It's very exciting,” Janine, Orange resident, said. “I mean, we're a plant city."

Many are already eyeing the new jobs that will be much closer to home.

“I have nephews that I'm hoping that you know, find good jobs,” Janine said.

In addition to jobs and economic growth, many believe the facility will also bring life to the area.

"When I moved to Orange, it was booming,” Janine said. “Then I seen it die down. So, this plant coming in, the hospital come in, I just see positive growth all over Orange, and it's a very good thing."

With the excitement also comes concern. Residents believe that some unwelcome changes may come with the new addition.

The cost of living and crime are some of the top concerns residents brought up.

"Living expenses actually, in all the groceries and stuff like that,” Axel Merle, Orange resident, said. “Also traffic is going to go up. With that, you know, comes crime.”

The city is already addressing some of the concerns.

"During the construction process, traffic will be tight, especially in the congested area that we already have here at the intersection of 1006 and 87,” Orange Mayor Larry Spears said. “And so, you're going to have that. You're going to have a lot more people in town than you normally do.”

Mayor Spears said the city is hiring extra police officers to keep up with the population growth.

“We want to beef up our police force,” Mayor Spears said. “Make sure that we prepared to have more people within the city limits of our community because we want to make sure that we're still doing what's best for everyone, protecting everyone.”

Construction has already begun on the refinery, and the company hopes to have everything operational by 2026.

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