General Motors began construction on a new, 450,000-square-foot, bi-level paint shop at its Fairfax Assembly and Stamping Plant, part of a $600 million investment at its Kansas City, Kansas plant, where workers build the Buick LaCrosse and Chevy Malibu.
Construction will take place in five major phases during the next two years. When the paint shop is complete, the plant’s footprint will be 3.7 million square feet, an increase of 15 percent.
“When complete, our plant will be able to continue to paint cars with a flawless finish while using a lot less energy and resources,” said plant manager William Kulhanek. “The addition of this paint shop also demonstrates GM’s commitment to maintain a strong presence in the Kansas City community.”
The all-new paint shop will feature substantial technology upgrades including: A 20-percent smaller footprint which uses up to 50 percent less energy per vehicle and reduce Volatile Organic Compound emissions; GM-patented Radiant Tub Ovens designed to use 20 percent less natural gas and 40 percent less electricity; Thin Film Technology, which reduces water use and maintenance and eliminates hazardous chemicals from the waste stream; Hyper Throw E-COAT, which places more coating in cavities and recesses for optimal corrosion protection.
"The employees at the Fairfax Plant are dedicated to ensuring they build the highest-quality vehicles for our customers, and are looking forward to working in one of the most advanced facilities GM operates,” said UAW Local 31 President George Ruiz. “All of our employees are pleased to know we will be working in Kansas City for years to come.”