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Thursday, 27 June 2019 19:49

Ford Finishes Chicago-Area Plant Renovations

Written by Erika Hobbs, Chicago Heights Patch
The $1 billion renovation of Ford's two Chicago-area plants is complete. The $1 billion renovation of Ford's two Chicago-area plants is complete. Ford

The $1 billion makeovers of Ford's Chicago Heights stamping plant and the Torrence Avenue assembly plant is now complete, company officials said.

 

Both plants build the 2020 Ford Explorer, Police Interceptor Utility and Lincoln Aviator. Ford hired 500 more employees between the two plants as part of the effort, bringing the total to about 6,500.

 

The company stripped the body shop to the floor and rebuilt it, adding two 3D printers to the plants and 600 new robots to the shop. One robot includes a camera that inspects electrical connections during manufacturing. The production line also uses 3D printed tools and error-proofing tools.

 

"In the first five days of the transformation, the team moved the scrap metal equivalent to the weight of the Eiffel Tower from the plant, making room for new equipment," Joe Hinrichs, Ford's president of automotive, said in a statement.

 

Ford also spent $40 million to upgrade lighting, cafeterias, break rooms and security for employees.

 

We thank Chicago Heights Patch for reprint permission.

 

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