ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Forest City Gear already received national attention for their role with NASA’s curiosity rover on Mars and now the local company is back in the spotlight as they break ground on a new business.
Forest City Gear has expanded eight times at their current Roscoe location and now a new building and business will be setting up shop across the street. But, the new Roscoe location almost didn't come to fruition on this side of the state line.
“There are lots of reasons to move across the state line and we did look at properties there," said Wendy Young, CEO of Forest City Gear
But the village of Roscoe wasn't prepared to lose a company that has been a part of their community for half a century.
“Despite the fact that Wisconsin gave us some fairly heavy financial incentives to move up there the city was most cooperative and that really kind of tipped the scales in their favor,” said Fred Young, CEO of Forest City Gear
The new 8,500 square foot facility will house their blank cutting business, which had previously been outsourced before the company found it more cost effective to do the work in house and the expansion will likely mean more jobs.
"Our hope is in the next 12 months to add four to five new jobs and add two to three new machines and after that we want to grow and we want to grow wisely and with good growth that we can control," said Wendy Young.
To keep up the tradition of Forest City Gear, which originated in Rockford in the 50's, the new company was named to reflect its community.
"We wanted to honor this community where we have been for 50 years now and recognize their cooperating by naming our new company Roscoe Works," Fred Young said.
The building is expected to be complete by the end of the year. Forest City Gear is one of the area's top employers with one hundred and fourteen workers.