Con-way Freight announced that it is substantially increasing its capacity in the Northern Illinois area with construction of two major new facilities in LaSalle and Rockford.
The less-than-truckload freight carrier held groundbreaking ceremonies at the new sites in LaSalle and the Rockford suburb of Cherry Valley, marking the start of construction at both locations. In LaSalle, the company is building a new 220-door Freight Assembly Center (FAC) while in Cherry Valley construction of a new 110-door local operating location is already underway.
The new facilities represent a local investment of more than $27.5 million, and respond to needs for expansion as growing freight volumes exceed capacity at existing facilities. Once the new facilities are completed, the company expects to increase local employment by more than 35 positions between the two sites.
Noting the supportive working relationship between Con-way and the local communities in which the new facilities will be located, Con-way’s Vice President of Central Division Operations Bruce Moss said, “We’ve worked closely with representatives from LaSalle, Winnebago County, Rockford and Cherry Valley to identify the most strategic locations and the ideal property for these facilities. Their support and cooperation has been tremendous and we thank them.’
“This is a key area for our operations because of its central location in our network,’ Moss added. “We’re pleased to contribute to the economic development and expansion of these communities through these investments, as well as the enhanced service opportunities that will be enabled by these new facilities.’
With its expanded Rockford facility, Con-way becomes the first company to begin construction in Cherry Valley’s new Rock 39 Industrial Park. The new facility more than doubles capacity to 110 dock doors and will be able to process more than 650,000 pounds of freight each day. Initially, Con-way Freight expects to add up to 10 additional driver sales representatives with the opening of the expanded facility bringing the total number of area employees to nearly 80.
“We are proud that Winnebago County, working with representatives from Venture One and Cherry Valley, was able to welcome the Con-way expansion as the first endeavor in the Rock 39 Industrial Park. Con-way certainly had a number of other location opportunities to build elsewhere and we are pleased they chose to remain in Winnebago County. Con-way is exactly the type of business we envision spearheading our I-39 logistics corridor, and we couldn’t be more pleased to be part of their expansion and retention efforts in this area,’ stated Scott Christiansen, chairman of the Winnebago County Board.
The LaSalle facility will provide two important functions for the company. During the day, it will serve as the local operating location for more than 250 businesses in the Greater LaSalle area, providing pick up and delivery of shipments. At night, it will function as one of Con-way’s largest FACs in the country, processing more than 60 million pounds of freight annually. The LaSalle FAC serves as a strategic central re-ship location where trucks arrive nightly from cities in 10 states across the Midwest. At the center, over a period of hours, over one thousand heavy-freight shipments are processed, trucks are reloaded and then dispatched back to their home cities providing next-day service. LaSalle becomes the 80th FAC in the Con-way Freight network.
“We’re honored that Con-way has chosen LaSalle as the site for construction of its largest Freight Assembly Center,’ said LaSalle’s Mayor Art Washkowiak. “LaSalle is located next to two of Illinois’ major transportation corridors ’ I-80 and I-39 ’ making it a convenient and efficient location for Con-way operations.’
Construction on both facilities is expected to last approximately one year with freight processing scheduled to begin at the new facilities in early 2009.