A 65,000-square-foot training center for the Carpenters’ District Council has opened at 8955 E. 38th Terrace in Kansas City.
The site across from Kauffman Stadium, a former Vatterott College location, underwent an $8.26 million remodeling to house the union offices, a health and welfare office for members, and state-of-the-art training space for apprentices and journeymen.
Dave Wilson, Kansas City area representative for the Carpenters’ District Council of Greater St. Louis & Vicinity, which represents Kansas City area members, said the location serves about 5,000 active and retired union members.
Given the boom in Kansas City area construction, Wilson said, the union now has about 700 apprentices and very few journeymen carpenters “on the bench” awaiting work. He said the union outgrew its former training space in North Kansas City.
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“The contractors we work for are really busy right now,” Wilson said. “It’s a good time to be a carpenter.”
Two of the carpenters’ biggest projects currently are with J.E. Dunn Construction at Cerner’s Three Trails business campus in south Kansas City and with McCownGordon Construction at the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood.
Wilson said each journeyman carpenter is required to do a week of safety-related training every year and may take additional skills classes. Apprentices get one week of training at the facility each quarter to work on specific carpentry skills. Carpentry apprenticeships last four years.
New apprentices start at about $14 an hour. Top journeyman pay is up to $36.55 an hour on commercial projects.
Wilson said the center was financed by the union’s apprenticeship trust fund and no public subsidies were involved.