GE Plans Locomotive Plant in Fort Worth

On May 12, GE Transportation announced its intention to open a new locomotive manufacturing facility in Texas, with production to start next year. The company said it will invest up to $96 million in the new plant to help it meet growing domestic and international demand for its locomotives and other transportation products.

The 900,000-square-foot facility under consideration is located in Fort Worth, and the company said the proposed location will become final upon conclusion of pending local approval.

The State of Texas will commit up to $4.2 million in incentives toward the project through the Texas Enterprise Fund (TEF).

"We see robust growth in the U.S. and around the globe. A new site will help us to effectively respond to the cyclical demand in the transportation industry and to strengthen our overall position," said Lorenzo Simonelli, president and CEO of GE Transportation in the company's announcement. He said that adding the facility will give the unit more flexibility and increase productivity as well.

GE said it will create more than 500 new high-tech manufacturing jobs at the new facility. The company also announced that it will expand its manufacturing workforce at its Erie, Pa., plant by hiring an additional 250 workers. GE Transportation has recalled approximately 800 production workers at its Erie manufacturing facility since late 2010 and has announced 450 new jobs since April (including those announced on May 12).

GE Transportation recently reported $903 million in first-quarter revenues, up 18% year-over-year. Segment profits for the same period were $157 million, up 37% year-over-year. The unit received $938 million of orders in the first quarter.