Here is today's summary of economic development news, a free service of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, representing Alabama's private sector investment in economic development.  If you enjoy NewsFlash, thank an EDPA Partner.


 

In this issue:
Officials break ground on final $8M phase of Alabama Robotics Technology Park to open in 2015
Alabama Aviation Center career fair, open house attracts more than 100 job seekers in Mobile
United Launch Alliance hints at new rocket line at Decatur plant and possible engine plant in Alabama
Small business, big impact
Cullman Economic Development honored for REHAU R&D center
Pell City teachers visit local industries
Alabama firm builds armored, luxury rides for customers in world's conflict-ridden regions
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Alabama harvests rainwater to be reused in manufacturing practices
Regional Business Summit set for Wednesday

 


Officials break ground on final $8M phase of Alabama Robotics Technology Park to open in 2015
on October 31, 2014

TANNER, Alabama - A handful of public officials came together Halloween morning to celebrate the final phase of the Alabama Robotics Technology Park across from Calhoun Community College.

 

The $8 million Integration, Entrepreneurial and Paint/Dispense Training Center will span 50,000 to 55,000 square feet and be a hub for companies to build and adapt automation for new and existing manufacturing processes. Companies will also use the facility for training in manual paint spraying and robotic dispense techniques.

 

Construction on the Tanner site started about two weeks ago and is expected to last approximately 10 months, according to retiring Calhoun President Marilyn Beck. Former Gov. Bob Riley's three-phase vision represents a total investment of more than $73 million, including robotics equipment.


more...

 


Alabama Aviation Center career fair, open house attracts more than 100 job seekers in Mobile
on November 01, 2014 

MOBILE, Alabama - Collin Hall could hardly contain his excitement talking about the new job he starts next week at AMRO Aero in Fairhope, but the Perdido, Ala., native promised not to lose sight of the bigger picture. 

 

"Yes ma'am. I'm going to finish school," Hall told Cynthia Anthony, acting president ofEnterprise State Community College, as more than 100 job seekers poured through the doors of the Alabama Aviation Center for its inaugural Aviation Career Fair and Open House.

 

Hall, who will be working on components in his new position, is in his first semester of classes at the ESCC satellite facility at Mobile Aeroplex at Brookley, but he promised Anthony he will complete his airframe and powerplant course of study despite his new job.

 

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United Launch Alliance hints at new rocket line at Decatur plant and possible engine plant in Alabama

on October 31, 2014 

DECATUR, Ala. - A new partnership between United Launch Alliance and Blue Origin, the rocket company founded by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, could mean production of a new rocket at ULA's massive plant in Decatur and a new rocket engine somewhere in North Alabama, ULA President and CEO Tory Bruno said this week.

 

In an interview with AL.com, Bruno said the Decatur plant that employs about 1,000 people now will continue to be ULA's "primary assembly and integration site" for rockets including its Atlas and Delta lines. "Decatur is just a great place," Bruno said. "For Atlas, for Delta, which will go on for years, and for whatever (the) product line looks like in the future, I anticipate it being here."

 

Bruno and Bezos announced in September that they would team up to replace the Russian-built RD-180 engines that now power the Atlas with a modified Blue Origin BE-4 engine already under development. The RD-180 has been reliable for years, and ULA has used it to boost a long line of national security and NASA payloads, but political tension between the U.S. and Russia has the government looking for an alternative.

 

more...

 

[al.com]

 

 

 

  


 


Small business, big impact
Brad Harper, Montgomery Advertiser
November 2, 2014

In July of last year, Alabama was pouring money into an industrial park, Hyundai was setting sales records and lawmakers were celebrating the expansion of a Shorter auto supplier. Headlines talked about the manufacturing boom and about the struggle to rebuild the job market.

 

That same month, Adrian Bell and Rebecca Hall quietly opened their mother-daughter business Quite the Pair in east Montgomery, just one of the dozens of tiny businesses that popped up across the River Region in July.

 

Whether they're in the headlines or not, people such as Bell and Hall could hold the future of the state in their hands. Microbusinesses, which have five or fewer employees, make up 88 percent of all state businesses according the Alabama MicroEnterprise Network. There are 165,000 of them in Alabama alone.

 

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[Montgomery Advertiser]

 

 

 

  


 

Cullman Economic Development honored for REHAU R&D center
by Trent Moore
Nov 1, 2014

The Cullman Economic Development Agency (CEDA) was honored by an international organization for excellence thanks to REHAU's ongoing expansion of a new research and development center in Cullman.


 

CEDA received a Silver Excellence in Economic Development Award for the 2014 project in the Business Retention & Expansion - Single Event category for communities with populations of less than 25,000, from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).


 

"We are honored to be recognized by IEDC with this prestigious award," CEDA Director Peggy Smith said. "There were 560 applicants from around the world and Cullman's REHAU Tech Center project was chosen as one of the best."



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Pell City teachers visit local industries

By DAVID ATCHISON, Home staff writer

 

PELL CITY - Teachers, counselors and school administrators were in the industrial park instead of the classroom this week - learning.

 

"You hear students say, "Why are we doing this?" Or, "How am I going to use this?" said Andy Robertson, a teacher at the Pell City High School. "It's good to get out and see."

The math and pre-engineering teacher said he saw practical uses of math at work in the industries teachers visited this week.

 

Robertson and eight other system teachers experienced how students can use classroom instruction in an industrial environment.

 

He said teachers can lose track at what they are teaching in the classrooms and how it can help high school graduates when they start looking for a new career or job.

"I didn't know what was here," said Susan Graham, a counselor at Duran South Junior High School, after visiting two local industries. "I had no idea."

 

more...

 

[ Daily Home]

 

  


Alabama firm builds armored, luxury rides for customers in world's conflict-ridden regions

By Dawn Kent Azok | dazok@al.com 

on November 03, 2014  

 

TRUSSVILLE, Alabama -- McSweeney Holdings is expanding its reach into some of the world's most dangerous places in Africa and the Middle East, delivering custom vehicles equipped with armored plating, luxury appointments and sophisticated office technology to wealthy buyers.

 

The Trussville-based specialty vehicle manufacturer gets vehicles from manufacturers and outfits them with after-market touches and accessories.

For years, the company's bread-and-butter business has included performance off-road trucks with oversized tires, specialty paint jobs and other extra utilities, as well as executive transportation vans that are popular in Asia.

 

Early this year, its Southern Comfort Automotive division launched the Chevrolet Reaper, a 2014 Silverado pickup transformed into an off-road performance truck.

 

more...

 

[al.com]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  


 

 


Toyota Motor Manufacturing Alabama harvests rainwater to be reused in manufacturing practices 
on October 31, 2014

HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -- Toyota's "green" efforts at its Huntsville engine plant have paid off.

 

The company announced Thursday it took home five awards this week for environmental excellence. Here is the complete list of honors:

 

* EPA ENERGY STAR Challenge for Industry - reduction of energy use by 14 percent (per unit produced) in one year.

 

* Three Toyota North America Environmental Awards - outstanding performance in energy and water management plus overall environmental improvement unit plant. The reduction in water use is equivalent to 75 million water bottles. The plant has received this award for eight consecutive years.

 

* City of Huntsville Air Pollution Control Achievement Award - reduction of electric usage by 4.3 gigawatt hours per year (enough to power 400 average households for a year).

 

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[al.com]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  


Regional Business Summit set for Wednesday

November 3, 2014 


 

Officials from across northeastern Alabama will host a regional business summit in Anniston Wednesday.


 

The event will be held at the Civilian Marksmanship Program on Sentinel Drive. It will include speakers Rick Brown, president of the Alabama Retail Association, and Tom Todt, an Anniston native and district director of the U.S. Small Business Administration's Alabama office.


 

Linda Hearn with the Calhoun County Chamber of Commerce said this is the group's first summit.

"We just thought it would be a great idea to bring everybody together and share ideas and best practices," she said.

 

Presenting the summit are the chambers of commerce of Calhoun, Cleburne and Etowah counties as well as the Randolph County Economic Development Authority. It is sponsored by Jacksonville State University's Small Business Development Center, Alabama Power Company and the SBA.

 

more...

 

[Anniston Star]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




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