BURTON, Mich. — General Motors, amid contract negotiations with the UAW, on Monday celebrated the opening of an $85 million (US$65 million) parts processing centre outside Flint, Mich., that will employ more than 800 workers.
It marks GM's largest investment in a U.S. warehouse and logistics facility in nearly 40 years, said Tim Turvey, GM global vice president of customer care and aftersales, although no new jobs are being created.
The 1.1 million square-foot ACDelco and GM Genuine Parts Processing centre, which started making deliveries in June, replaces smaller operations nearby and in West Chester, Ohio. It's the primary packaging and shipping location for GM's Customer Care and Aftersales business in North America, sending parts to distribution centres across the U.S. and Canada.
"The other [Burton plant] was really too small, and obviously, we needed to consolidate operations. It was inefficient to have two different operations," Turvey told reporters. "We have international operations, packaging operations. We consolidated them into one facility here, and it's just more efficient for us to provide better service to our dealers and to our customers."
The consolidation will result in GM dealers getting better service and more accurate parts orders, he added. GM already has closed the plant in West Chester, which is near Cincinnati, and is almost done decommissioning the previous Burton plant, he said.
About 120 of the Ohio plant's 200 workers and all 700 from the old Burton plant transferred to the new processing centre.
The facility will restock inventories at parts distribution centres that serve GM dealerships, package parts into instructional service kits and prepare parts shipments to customers in 35 countries.