Chrysler announces expansion plans for ToledoWritten by Duane Ramsey | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Chrysler Group LLC announced its much anticipated plans for expanding manufacturing operations at the Toledo Assembly Complex with a $500 million investment in the local facility that will add 1,105 new jobs to the local economy.
The company will invest a total of $1.7 billion to support the development and production of the next generation Jeep sport utility vehicle in Toledo in 2013, announced Chrysler Group Chairman and CEO Sergio Marchionne at the TAC.
The $500 million investment includes expanding the plant with a 260,000 square-foot addition to the existing body shop and making additional upgrades such as a state-of-the-art Metrology Center at the TAC. Upon completion of the expansion, a second shift will be added in late 2013, adding more than 1,110 new jobs.
There are currently no laid-off workers at the facility so those are 1,100 new jobs with this expansion, said Mauro Pino, plant manager of the TAC. When the positions become available, they will be posted at www.chryslercareers.com where applications will be accepted online and not at the plant.
Marchionne confirmed that the new Jeep D-segment SUV, which would replace the Jeep Liberty, will be built in the Toledo facility beginning in 2013 for export to markets all over the world.
“I am pleased to make this announcement which further demonstrates our commitment to the special relationship that Chrysler and the City of Toledo have shared. Chrysler has become a part of this community’s fabric over the decades and we continue to play our part in contributing to the city’s industrial and social development,” Marchionne said.
“The decision we made clearly demonstrates the confidence we have in the Toledo Assembly Complex, in its future, and moreover, in the commitment and quality of work of the people who work here,” he said.
Marchionne was joined on the stage by Governor John Kasich, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, Toledo Mayor Mike Bell, director of UAW Region 2B Ken Lortz and Pino.
Kasich cited the discussions his administration had with Chrysler that resulted in the State of Ohio offering the company incentives that included a 75-percent job creation tax credit for 15 years with this expansion.
“Manufacturing is coming back in Ohio and it’s all about the work force with skills that are an asset to our state. We went to work today to make a better tomorrow for the next generation,” Kasich said.
Kaptur received a rousing ovation from the UAW workers who attended the ceremony.
“It was very heartening. I felt the same toward them and I was cheering for them and how hard they worked to get here today. It’s a great day for Toledo,” Kaptur said.
“Today, Chrysler has given us the opportunity to turn our city around. We need to work together all rowing in the same direction. We need to believe this is a great city,” Bell said.
“We celebrate a very bright future for this facility and the people who work here. Today, we begin the next chapter in Toledo,” Pino said.
Work on the manufacturing infrastructure will begin in the next few weeks with scheduled completion in the fall of 2013, according to Chrysler.
“Jeep has a great past and an even more exciting future. Jeep is at the heart of our plans to internationalize Chrysler through access to Fiat’s distribution capabilities in Europe and Latin America,” Marchionne said.