Construction workers help move the first of 299 pieces of steel that will form the structure of the new 800,000-square-foot paint shop being built on the site of the former Mack Avenue Engine Complex.
In addition to the work on the new paint shop, crews are busy cleaning, polishing and painting the two plants that comprised the Mack Avenue Engine Complex in preparation for equipment installation. A sound barrier wall also is going up between the plant and the homes along Beniteau Street to the west of the plant.
The current Mack I facility, which produced the Pentastar 3.6-, 3.2- and 3.0-liter engines, is being decommissioned and prepared for general assembly. The Mack II facility, which has been idled since 2012, is in the process of being repurposed for the body shop of the new plant.
When completed, the plant will produce the next-generation Jeep Grand Cherokee, as well as an all-new, three-row, full-size Jeep SUV and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) models, adding 3,850 new jobs to support production. The new plant will be the first new assembly plant in Detroit since the construction of Jefferson North nearly 30 years ago.
“I think (this project) shows the Motor City is still the automotive capital of the world because we are still building assembly plants,” John Powell, Senior Manager—Paint Facilities, said.
The Company announced in February that it would invest $1.6 billion to convert the two existing Mack facilities into a new assembly site for an all-new, three-row, full-size Jeep® SUV and the next-generation Jeep Grand Cherokee, creating 3,850 new jobs. The first vehicles are expected to roll off the line by the end of 2020. When complete, the facility will be the first new assembly plant built in the city of Detroit in nearly 30 years.