A new automotive parts manufacturing plant is expected to occupy a building on Kansas City International Airport property, possibly creating up to 375 jobs over the next few years, city officials said Wednesday.
The city declined to release the out-of-state company’s name until the project is formally discussed by the City Council’s Planning, Zoning and Economic Development Committee at a meeting scheduled for Sept. 16.
But Northland council members who have been briefed on the project said they are excited about the new development in a building at 10501 N.W. Transcon Drive, on airport property.
“This is what we need more of in the Northland and around KCI in particular,” said Councilman Dan Fowler, who represents the 2nd District, which includes the airport. “They liked the proximity to KCI and I-29.”
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Teresa Loar, 2nd District at-large councilwoman, said Kansas City beat out several other communities competing for the project, which will create good-paying manufacturing jobs for parts that will primarily serve the General Motors Fairfax plant in Kansas City, Kan.
The plan calls for the company to create 375 jobs, paying an average of nearly $45,000, over the next 10 years. Kerrie Tyndall, director of economic development for Kansas City municipal government, said the company has indicated it plans to create the majority of those jobs in the first few years.
The measure was on the council’s economic development committee Wednesday docket but was postponed a week while financing details are finalized.
On Sept. 16, the committee is scheduled to discuss authorizing the issuance of up to $56 million in taxable industrial revenue bonds under the city’s Chapter 100 incentive program for the purchase of machinery and equipment over the 10-year period.
Katherine Carttar, economic development analyst for the city, said the bonds are not a debt to the city and the city is under no obligation to pay them back. Instead, the company buys the bonds in phases as needed over the 10 years and pays back the debt service with its own revenues.
This proposed new facility follows the addition of other automotive parts plants designed to serve recent expansions to the Ford and GM plants in the Kansas City area.
One of those suppliers, Martinrea Riverside LLC, on Wednesday officially opened its facility in Riverside. The company will manufacture welded, corrosion-resistant engine cradles and rear suspension cradles for the Chevy Malibu built at Fairfax.
Martinrea expects to be fully operational by year’s end, with employment now expected to reach 360. That exceeds the original projection for 290 new jobs.