Volvo breaks ground on New River plant expansion

DUBLIN, Va. (July 2) — Volvo Trucks North America broke ground yesterday on a $148-million US expansion of its flagship truck factory, expected to boost the company’s production of commercial trucks by 60% to 50,000 a year by 2002.

Volvo’s New River Valley Assembly Plant in Dublin, Va., which manufactures all Volvo trucks sold in North America, has nearly doubled its production since 1996 and turned out 30,000 trucks last year, exceeding the company’s projections by more than 11%.

The new development would make the New River Valley facility the largest heavy-truck plant in the world.

Critical to the project was the ratification of a six-year labor agreement by plant production and salaried workers in January, and a package of state and local tax incentives.

The $148-million expansion project will see the construction of new facilities and infrastructure, as well as improvements to the plant’s four existing buildings. In addition, the expansion will include the construction of a “Center of Excellence,” a joint effort between Volvo and the New River Valley Community College. The center will provide employment training programs for area residents, including those employed by Volvo.

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