ROCHELLE (WIFR) – With the addition of a third shop at Nippon Sharyo, nearly 300 jobs are on the way.
It’s been a year since Jennifer Bastian started working as a logistics manager at Nippon Sharyo. Now she’s excited to see how many new faces will soon join her at the Rochelle manufacturing company.
“It’s great. Any new improvement is bringing more people to the company and we like seeing it grow,” Bastian said.
That improvement is a $54 million dollar expansion of Nippon Sharyo’s facilities, which makes passenger rail-cars for dozens of transportation systems, including Metra. The expansion will turn this land into a 300-thousand square foot production shop, adding 80 new workers and that’s just the beginning.
Governor Pat Quinn says this project will create 200 construction jobs as well. U.S. Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood says it is quality workers that attract companies to Hub City.
“This company could’ve been anywhere in the world, but they decided to come to Rochelle, because of a good workforce, a strong workforce,” said LaHood.
That’s something Bastian hopes will only grow stronger when the plant opens this time next year.
The new facility will focus on metal and machining work. Construction on the building begins tomorrow. It’s expected to be completed by next spring.