GE Transportation and its high-tech offerings are on a hot streak. Citing burgeoning U.S. and global demand for its products, GE Transportation announced plans today to open a new manufacturing facility in Fort Worth, Texas, that will employ more than 500 workers by 2012 with the potential of up to 275 additional workers in subsequent years, and add 250 new jobs at its long-time home base in Erie, Pennsylvania. Since 2009, GE has announced the creation of 6,500 new high-tech manufacturing jobs in the U.S., with nearly 1,000 of that total added since April of this year.
GE plans to invest up to $96 million to build the state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Texas. The new 900,000-square-foot facility will house manufacturing and assembly of GE’s rail and transportation-related products, including fuel-efficient locomotives like the Evolution® Series, which reduces emissions by up to 40 percent and cuts fuel use by 5 percent – the equivalent of 640,000 gallons over its lifetime.
Production on the new plant is scheduled to start by 2012.
Texas Governor Rick Perry has already expressed enthusiasm, saying “This investment will create a major locomotive manufacturing facility in Fort Worth, along with hundreds of jobs for Texans and millions in capital investment in the area.”
In Erie, Pennsylvania — GE Transportation’s home for the past 100 years — expansion is also underway. GE’s Erie plant, which employs over 4,500 people, will be hiring an additional 250 production workers. It’s yet another notch in Erie’s job-growth belt: the facility has recalled around 800 production workers since late 2010, and announced 450 new jobs since April (including the 250 announced today). The job growth is a natural outcrop of GE Transportation’s growing business — it received $938 million of orders in the first quarter, and reported $903 million in first-quarter revenues, up 18% year-over-year. Segment profits for the same period were $157 million, up 37% year-over-year.