Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S35

KENTUCKY

Suddenly, Kentucky has a knack for
attracting aluminum projects

B

from the region's Interstate 65.
Two years ago, acting on behalf of local government, TVA had the land deemed a "certified megasite," with third-party consultants
reviewing all aspects of the property to ensure
that no surprises might complicate its development into an intensive-use industrial site.
The certification means that, in addition to
meeting an automaker's criteria for access, logistics and workforce, the site will have no engineering problems, no environmental issues,
no archeological concerns, and no underlying
legal liabilities.
Once approved, the Huntsville Mega Site
was shovel-ready for construction - all of it
more than a year before an actual automaker
expressed any interest.
"The Tennessee Valley did not win the Toyota and Mazda competition overnight," U.S.
Rep. Mo Brooks, who represents the 5th Congressional District, said in a statement when
the new auto plant was announced. "Rather,
this victory is the culmination of decades of
hard work and leadership offered by local,
state and federal officials who have consistently worked together."
-

lindsay chappell

raidy Industries Inc.'s plan to invest $1.3
billion in a greenfield aluminum rolling
mill in northeastern Kentucky is a major auto
supply chain project. But it is part of an ongoing phenomenon for the state.
Since 2014, Kentucky has attracted more
than $3 billion in aluminum-related investment - triple the investment in the segment
there in the 12 years prior.
The sector is growing as U.S. fuel economy regulations drive a widespread trend
in reducing vehicle weight - a pressure that
is fanning the demand for more aluminum
capacity. The new mill will supply the aluminum sheet metal necessary for lightweighting vehicles by
2020.
Braidy
Industries
CEO Craig Bouchard
said he is already sold
out of the first seven
year's production capacity, with six automakers now part of the
Craig Bouchard
customer base.
Why is Kentucky attracting the investment?
A key reason is that the state offers some of
the lowest U.S. power rates east of the Mississippi River. Low-cost electricity is central to

aluminum production.
But Bouchard said the area also was an ideal
logistical fit for Braidy's plans. The mill's site, just
outside of Ashland, Ky., is about the same driving distance to Detroit and to the automakers
around the Southeast, he said. Scrap from a coil
of aluminum delivered to a customer in either
location that morning can be brought back to
Braidy's furnace the same night.
That timing is important since more than a
third of coil typically returns to a mill as scrap
for reuse, he said.
"How you handle the scrap for the
automakers determines your operating
margin and determines their cost structure,"
Bouchard said.
The investment represents the first
greenfield aluminum rolling mill built in
more than 40 years. Bouchard said he picked
Ashland because of its particularly high
unemployment rate and the availability
there of skilled metal workers and miners.
The project has drawn more than 5,500
applications for 600 jobs so far.
"There's a lot of energy and expertise in
the area," Bouchard said. "Anywhere else, we
would've had to steal the 600 people from other companies. In Ashland, they're just knocking
down the door to come work for us."

- stephanie hernandez mcgavin

Braidy's planned aluminum
mill near Ashland, Ky.

E C O N O M I C D E V E L O P M E N T G U I D E / J U LY 2 0 1 8

35



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry

Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - Intro
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S1
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S2
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S3
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S4
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S5
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S6
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S7
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S8
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S9
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S10
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S11
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S12
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S13
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S14
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S15
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S16
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S17
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S18
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S19
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S20
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S21
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S22
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S23
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S24
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S25
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S26
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S27
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S28
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S29
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S30
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S31
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S32
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S33
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S34
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S35
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S36
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S37
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S38
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S39
Guide to Economic Development in the Global Auto Industry - S40
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