N.C. plant closing has positive impact on Shippensburg Volvo plant

December 16, 2009

SHIPPENSBURG, Pa. -- What's bad for Asheville, N.C., is good for south-central Pennsylvania when it comes to the closing of a Volvo plant, according to a Franklin County, Pa., economic development leader.

Volvo's plant in Shippensburg will manufacture cabs for motor graders after the North Carolina plant closes next March. Other work will be sent to Sweden and South Korea, the Associated Press reported.

Two hundred and twenty-eight people will lose jobs, the AP reported.

"If you're on the Asheville end of that decision, you are obviously disappointed, ... but if you're on our end, it has a positive impact," L. Michael Ross, president of the Franklin County Area Development Corp., said this week.

The new product for Shippensburg would expand production beyond compactors, graders and milling machines.

"I would expect at some point it would add to the employment base," Ross said.

He said Volvo is in the midst of a physical expansion of its plant in Shippensburg.


Volvo spokeswoman Beatrice Cardon told The Asheville Citizen-Times the company sold just 60,000 pieces of equipment in North America this year, two-thirds below projections.

In a news release, Cardon said a small number of employees from the Asheville plant will be offered positions at Shippensburg.

"This decision has no impact on the ongoing significant investments in Shippensburg, where the Volvo CE plant is being expanded to receive the motor grader production and the manufacturing of grader cabs," Olof Persso, president and CEO of Volvo Construction Equipment, said in the news release.

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