Question: Whatever happened to Chicago Bridge & Iron, which planned to build a $110 million plant in Marion County with 250 to 350 jobs?
Answer: A struggling economy and a worldwide cool-down of the nuclear industry idled Chicago Bridge & Iron's plans for a plant in New Hope, Tenn., to build nuclear storage vessels.
But environmental impact studies and permit applications filed with state and federal authorities are complete, officials say.
Marion County Mayor John Graham said Friday that CB&I officials last fall were preparing to renew the site's nuclear certification, which expired in January.
"It's my understanding that they've done that," Graham said.
CB&I paid $1.11 million for a little over 60 acres of Tennessee River frontage in 2008 and 2009 for a proposed 500,000-square-foot building, a 4,700-foot rail extension, a barge terminal and a 320-foot dock, documents show.
CB&I spokeswoman Jan Seiving did not return calls requesting comment, but in June 2011 said the company was waiting for a nuclear industry rebound.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Association, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has active applications for 28 new reactors, though only a handful have moved forward.
EIA projects the industry will add approximately 19.1 gigawatts of nuclear capacity between 2012 and 2040, with 11 gigawatts coming from new reactors.
This update was written by staff writer Ben Benton. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6569. To suggest a topic for "Whatever happened to," email news@timesfree press.com.
Ben Benton is a news reporter at the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He covers Southeast Tennessee and previously covered North Georgia education. Ben has worked at the Times Free Press since November 2005, first covering Bledsoe and Sequatchie counties and later adding Marion, Grundy and other counties in the northern and western edges of the region to his coverage. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Tenn., a graduate of Bradley Central High School. Benton ...