Anderson-based ALA Trucking Inc. has broken ground on a new headquarters in the Madison County city. The company is investing nearly $1.5 million to convert a former lumber yard into a facility that will also serve as a warehouse, truck service center and truck parts store.

ALA ships commercial and consumer products for manufacturers and distributors throughout the country. The freight company currently employs 33 in Anderson and plans to add 10 more jobs once the new facility is complete.

The project is being funded by loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration’s 504 loan program, awarded through the Indiana Statewide Certified Development Corp. and Muncie-based First Merchants Bank. ALA Owner and Chief Financial Officer Paul Fogle says the loan allows the company "to fulfill our business space needs sooner and expand our business quicker than other financing methods."

"From a risk perspective it allows a local bank partner to take on a little more risk than they may have been comfortable with without the program," said Fogle. "The end result is a more competitive business creating more local employment opportunities and generating additional community, state and federal tax revenue."

The new ALA headquarters is expected to be complete in 2018.