WILLIAMSBURG, Ky.—Firestone Industrial Products L.L.C. has broken ground on a 68,000-sq.-ft. addition in Williamsburg, which will expand production of the company's automotive air springs for the electric vehicle market.
The $50 million expansion is expected to create 250 jobs and be completed by December 2022, according a news release.
Firestone has operated in Whitley County since 1989 and employs more than 500 people at the 375,000-sq.-ft. facility, where the company produces approximately four million parts annually.
"Today, we celebrate the vitality and growth of this plant and this community, with new investment, new jobs and a physical expansion driven by growing demand for our products and, just as fundamentally, by this team's commitment to delivering innovation and superior quality for our customers here and around the world," Firestone Industrial Products President Emily Poladian said in the release. "Our company and our Kentucky team have a vital role to play in the transformation of mobility brought forth by advanced electric vehicle systems and by key supporting technologies like our Firestone air springs and air suspensions."
Firestone Industrial Products, founded in 1936 and headquartered in Nashville, Tenn., is a subsidiary of Bridgestone Americas Inc. Firestone manufactures air springs and related products for commercial trucks and trailers, passenger vehicles including sport-utility vehicles and minivans, light trucks, motor homes, buses, agricultural equipment, rail and industrial applications.
Firestone operates two North American plants, a European office and technical center in the Netherlands, as well as international manufacturing facilities in Brazil, Poland, China and Costa Rica.
"As we continue to build a better Kentucky for all of our families, I want to thank Firestone Industrial Products for its commitment to Whitley County, the Eastern Kentucky region and the commonwealth as a whole," Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said. "This company has been a dedicated corporate partner in the commonwealth for many years, and this investment shows Firestone's commitment to Kentucky as it creates 250 new jobs to meet increased demand for cutting-edge technology in electric vehicles. Kentucky's work force remains a national leader in manufacturing and made our state the perfect place for this expansion."