The Ford Motor Company plans to invest $600 million to renovate its Louisville Assembly Plant, and will eventually employ 2,900 workers at the refurbished site. The automaker’s new facility will build the next-generation of vehicles starting late next year and will require an additional shift, creating 1,800 new jobs on top of the 1,100 employees currently working at the plant.B
“Our Louisville Assembly Plant transformation further proves our commitment to American manufacturing and our commitment to deliver the high-quality, fuel-efficient vehicles people really want,” says Mark Fields, Ford’s president of The Americas. “Working closely with the UAW and Kentucky officials, we have found a way to competitively deliver an important new vehicle that is good for our customers and supports our plan to deliver a well-balanced product portfolio of cars, trucks and utilities.”
The plant will reopen with tooling and facility upgrades in its final assembly area and body shop. Before the factory reopens, about three quarters of the current workforce at the plant will be temporarily laid off, however employees will receive supplemental payments and unemployment compensation totaling 95 percent of their current paycheck.
In a press release, Gov. Steve Beshear and Mayor Jerry Abramson also announced the approval of an amended incentive package at today’s Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority meeting, which increases the state’s incentive package by $60 million for a total of up to $240 million.
The additional incentive is intended to encourage Ford to make further investments in the future.
“Kentucky takes great pride in its ongoing partnership with Ford Motor Company,” Gov. Steve Beshear said in a news release. “The transformation of the Louisville Assembly Plant demonstrates the depth of that relationship and the tremendous results that can occur when state and local government and the private sector work together. It is because of our relationship that the Commonwealth proactively approved an amended incentive package today that will create the flexibility to bring Ford’s total investment at Louisville Assembly Plant and Kentucky Truck Plant to $1 billion and increase employment by another 1,000 by 2016.”
The Louisville Assembly Plant is the third North American body-on-frame truck plant that Ford is re-tooling to enable production of fuel-efficient products from its global vehicle platforms. The new technology will allow LAP to build up to six different vehicles at the same time, allowing Ford to meet demand more quickly in the event of potential shifting customer preferences dictated by changing economic conditions.