Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Thursday, June 15, 2006


What a red letter day for Pullman! Not only did we learn that Pullman will have the sole Wal-Mart Supercenter in the Quad Cities for several years to come, Schweitzer Engineeirng Labs just announced that its new 200,000 sq. ft. Manufacturing facility will be built in Pullman, adding 300 jobs to our local economy. Heck, the new Supercenter and the new SEL building may even open around the same time.


Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Inc., (SEL) announced Thursday that it will double its manufacturing capacity to more than 200,000 square feet in an expansion that will add 300 jobs.

In a news release issued Thursday, SEL announced it is submitting plans for state and city approval, with earthmoving and grading scheduled to begin July 1 and building construction to start August 1. Completion is expected in May 2007.

SEL said the expansion will take place on the southeast corner of the existing 103,000-square-foot manufacturing building at 2440 NE Hopkins Court.It will add 75,000 square feet at the ground level with a 25,000-square-foot second floor-or mezzanine level-overlooking the manufacturing operations. The original 65,000-square-foot building was constructed in 1999 and 2000, and nearly 40,000 square feet were added in 2002.

SEL has again selected ALSC Architects and Lydig Construction of Spokane to design and build the new project. Lydig is constructing two other buildings on SEL-owned property in Pullman.

The company's new corporate headquarters, a 90,000-square-foot, five-story structure, and a 17,000-square-foot event center will be complete in September. The event center will be available for use by the public.

SEL founder and president Ed Schweitzer said in Thursday's news release, that the company is growing in all geographic areas.

"We need the manufacturing capacity to serve customers and the worldwide demand for our products," he said. "This is a great opportunity for our community, for the people already here, and for those who may want to be part of making electric power safer, more reliable, and more economical."

"This new expansion allows SEL the space to build robust, repeatable, and scalable processes and will add capacity that we really need," said Kevin Fritch, SEL vice president of operations. "We're building significant square footage, which will provide an additional 75,000 square feet of manufacturing space plus 25,000 square feet for offices, training, and conference rooms."

Other efficiencies were designed into the building, Fritch added, including five new loading docks that will accommodate all modes of truck transportation.

SEL serves the electric power industry worldwide through the design, manufacture, supply, and support of products and services for power system protection, monitoring, control, automation, and metering.


April E. Coggins said...

Today is a red letter day for Pullman. I am very grateful for all of the positive growth in Pullman and Whitman County. I was speaking with another life long Pullman resident last week. He was shaking his head in disbelief that the long awaited golf course expansion and the corridor widening would happen within days of each other. After years and years of frustration and waiting, now we are finally seeing progress. Every day seems to get better.

April E. Coggins said...

300 new jobs at Schweitzer Engineering and 300 new jobs at Wal-Mart, that's 600 new jobs in Pullman!! WOW!