Planning for what would become Southpointe began in the 1980s, as the Washington County Redevelopment Authority in partnership with the RIDC began to pursue a tract of land in Cecil Township that had been the site of the Western Center, a reform school and a state mental hospital. The property for the first phase, Southpointe I, was acquired in 1986, with construction beginning in 1993. The location was chosen because of its access to Interstate 79, its proximity to Pittsburgh and low tax rates. By 2013, Southpointe I had become filled and the second phase, Southpointe II neared completion, with 800 acres (320 ha) across both. A third phase is planned for the other side of Interstate 79, to be called Cool Valley Industrial Park.