published Wednesday, February 11th, 2009

Chattanooga: Deal opens power at VW plant site

The site of Volkswagen’s planned auto assembly plant is powering up.

A city panel Tuesday approved a contract to provide temporary electrical connections to the so-called “trailer village” that will hold construction offices and enable erection of the main structures.

Locally based Advanced Power & Lighting won a $1.14 million contract to provide the temporary power package to the site.

Companies are mobilizing on the edge of the main building pads at Enterprise South industrial park as work ramps up on the plant.

Steve Leach, the city’s public works administrator, said at a meeting of the Industrial Development Board that Advanced Power will put up poles and install the electrical equipment so the site can be hooked into EPB’s system.

FAST FACT

The city and Hamilton County are splitting the cost of the Advanced Power contract.

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According to VW, more than $55 million has been awarded to local companies, including work sourced by both Volkswagen and state and local governments.

“Advanced Power and Lighting offered a competitive bid which met all our specifications,” said Frank Fischer, the VW project’s chief executive. “This is another milestone in this project as work continues to move forward at the site.”

City Engineer Bill Payne said eight proposals were received for the power project and Advanced’s was the lowest bid to provide electricity for work on the plant’s paint, assembly and body shop buildings.

“Those are the primarily areas being served at this time,” Mr. Payne said. The first structure to go up is a $30 million paint shop shell.

Mr. Payne said more electrical work to provide power to the plant will be undertaken later. VW is building a 1.9 million-square-foot plant where it plans to make 150,000 vehicles a year.

about Mike Pare...

Mike Pare, the deputy Business editor at the Chattanooga Times Free Press, has worked at the paper for 27 years. In addition to editing, Mike also writes Business stories and covers Volkswagen, economic development and manufacturing in Chattanooga and the surrounding area. In the past he also has covered higher education. Mike, a native of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., received a bachelor’s degree in communications from Florida Atlantic University. he worked at the Rome News-Tribune before ...

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