Company To Build Steel Plant, Create 65 Jobs In KY

16 September 2016

Steel Ventures will construct a new building in Wurtland to produce galvanized steel, meaning about 65 jobs when it opens next summer, said Amanda Clark, vice president of operations at the Ashland Alliance.

"We've been working on this for several months," Clark said Thursday. "Everyone came together to make this happen."

The new building at the former National Mines Building on U.S. 23 near the Industrial Parkway will add about $16 million to the local economy, according to a release from the Ashland Alliance, the chamber group representing Boyd and Greenup counties.

The announcement was the second significant economic news focused on Wurtland this week. Ironton-based Portable Solutions Group said Monday it had signed a lease to expand its manufacturing capabilities at a 70,000-square-foot building in Wurtland owned by Huntington-based J.H. Fletcher & Co.

That company plans to more than double its employee base in 2016 to about 150 by the end of the year. It does business worldwide selling blast-resistant modules to the refining and natural gas industries and for industrial and commercial construction companies for safety reasons and to government and the military for security reasons.

The new Steel Ventures plant will coat a variety of steel products from its affiliated company, Steel of West Virginia. The produce line includes truck trailer cross members, I-beams, post and complex fabricated assemblies and parts for other plants in the Tri-State, according to the release.

"It is great news for the employees of Steel of West Virginia that Steel Ventures is going to build a galvanizing plant in Kentucky," Tim Duke, president and chief executive officer of Steel of West Virginia in Huntington, said in a prepared release.

"Steel of West Virginia customers are wanting more and more galvanized product, and having a reliable galvanizer at our disposal through a company also owned by our parent, Steel Dynamics Inc., is important to keeping our mills and our employees busy."

Before the project could move forward, partners including the Woodlands Foundation, Kentucky Power and the Greenup County Fiscal Court worked together to offset costs to expand a natural gas line to the site, Clark said.

The Woodlands Foundation was established by Ashland Inc. when the company moved its headquarters out of the Tri-State.

"They're already moving dirt," Clark said of the project.

"By working with Steel Ventures Inc. management, we were able to help them find the pathway for expansion in this region and in Kentucky," Tim Gibbs, Ashland Alliance president and chief executive officer, said in a prepared release.

"This is one more example of how resilient our economy is and how we can build on the momentum of the area," Kevin Halter, Ashland Alliance chairman, said in the release.

"Our partnerships with (the) Cabinet for Economic Development, Greenup County Fiscal Court along with Judge-Executive Bobby Carpenter, go a long way toward having the team to help our industries grow and prosper," Halter said.


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