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post #6 of (permalink) Old 08-18-2016, 10:52 AM Thread Starter
rickaren
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Construction underway for Chrysler supplier

Construction underway for Chrysler supplier in Belvidere

Aug. 18, 2016

BELVIDERE — Construction is underway on a 336,000-square-foot building where components for the Jeep Cherokee will be made.

About 500 people will be employed when the building opens at 725 Logistics Drive, about a mile northwest of the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles factory in Landmark Townhall Industrial Park.

Officials are mum on who the tenant will be.


Quote:
"I can't share who the company is," said Jarid Funderburg, executive director of Growth Dimensions, an economic development agency for Belvidere and Boone County.

"I can say it is Chrysler-related."

The Landmark Group is the developer, builder and will own the building on a long-term lease. The company could not disclose its client at this time.

Fiat Chrysler announced a shakeup of its manufacturing plants last year. In March, it said it would move the Cherokee to Belvidere from Toledo, Ohio, and cease production of the Jeep Patriot, Jeep Compass and Dodge Dart here.

That means there will be a shuffling of 12 suppliers and the 2,500 to 3,000 employees that work for them, many in buildings clustered near the plant.

Fiat Chrysler will spend $350 million to upgrade the plant for the new model, and add 300 jobs to the workforce of 4,180 hourly and 320 salaried employees.

In addition the 500 manufacturing jobs coming to Landmark's tenant, another 500 manufacturing jobs will be brought to Sager Industrial Park, two miles east of the auto plant, Funderburg said.

After the supplier shuffle, Funderburg said there will be more Fiat Chrysler-related jobs in Belvidere because of the Cherokee than there are with the three current models.

"With this type of vehicle coming here, we will have a net gain in employment," Funderburg said. "And suppliers, they're going to be doing more than assembly and sequencing; they're going to be doing manufacturing of parts."

Funderburg said Growth Dimensions has been working with Rock Valley College, the Northern Illinois Workforce Alliance and other organizations to make sure there are people trained and ready to be hired for these jobs.

But the Cherokee shift from Toledo may bring an influx of union workers from Ohio. Bruce Baumhower, president of UAW Local 12, said earlier this year that the union was working to make sure members had work after the Cherokee moved.

"We've got a lot of Cherokee suppliers here and our job now is to secure their jobs," Baumhower told WNWO-TV in Toledo in January.

"The large components of the Cherokee like the dash panels and the seats will be built in Illinois near the plant the Cherokee is moving to, but some of the other smaller components could stay here and be shipped there. However, the large parts usually need to be about 10 minutes from the plant, so that is why those jobs may leave."

SOURCE

Rick

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