ABILENE, Texas—Sustainability isn't always about what goes into your tires.
Sometimes, it's just about using less … well, tire. And that's where retreading comes in, taking perfectly good tire casings and giving them brand-new tread for a longer service life.
In fact, Bridgestone Americas Inc. is a fan. The Nashville-based tire maker is a vocal proponent of retreading—particularly from a sustainability standpoint. And it is seeing demand for its tread rubber products steadily increase.
So, Bridgestone's investing in some of its operations.
The company May 16 broke ground on a $60 million expansion project that will add roughly 50,000 square feet to its existing Bridgestone Bandag tread rubber facility in Abilene. The investment—which calls for expansion of its mixing operations and capabilities—will be coupled with an immediate move to increase production operations to six- and seven-day schedules.
Combined, these efforts will result in a 16-percent improvement in the plant's output.
Construction is expected to be completed within the coming years and expanded mixing operations should come online by 2025.
"Today is a significant day for all of us at the Abilene Bandag plant and across Bridgestone Americas, as we break ground on this important expansion that will allow us to grow our production capabilities to meet the needs of our customers," Abilene Plant Manager Billy Fralick said in a statement.