Panel OKs VW work

Panel OKs VW work

July 1st, 2009 by Mike Pare in Business

Construction of Volkswagen's auto assembly plant in Chattanooga continues to accelerate with a pair of related projects moving ahead Tuesday.

An Illinois company has won a $3.64 million contract for electrical work on the heating and cooling building for the Volkswagen plant going up at Enterprise South industrial park.

Schneider Electrical Inc. of Palatine, Ill., was awarded the contract by the city's Industrial Development Board.

City Engineer Bill Payne said the company has an office in Nashville that will perform much of the work. Lawson Electric locally is expected to be a subcontractor on the project.

Schneider was the low bidder, he said. A state grant is expected to pay the cost of the work.

Staff Photo by Dan Henry Construction continues on the Volkswagen manufacturing plant and paint shop at Enterprise South on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Steve Leach, Chattanooga's public works administrator, said the city has begun talks with Gestamp Corp., the first tier one supplier to land in Hamilton County.

"We've started discussions about the project," Mr. Leach said about the layout of the $90 million plant that is to go up near the VW plant site at Enterprise South.

Officials announced last week Gestamp will buy about 40 acres at the industrial park and build the plant to supply VW with stamped parts and welded assemblies for the new VW sedan's undercarriage.

Gestamp will employ at least 230 people within three years, a company official said.

Mr. Leach said his staff is moving quickly because Gestamp wants to be up and running by mid-2010.

"It looks like things are progressing right along," said Ted Mills, the development board's chairman.