More manufacturing projects are underway in Albany. And with them comes more opportunities for jobs, wages and a “healthier” economy.
Two manufacturing facilities in Albany are due to be completed this year. Their arrival is expected to have an estimated $2.7 million in direct and indirect impacts on the community, according to Albany economic development manager Seth Shelley.
“Manufacturing jobs have a disproportionately positive impact on the economy,” Shelley said.
2 new facilities
CorrQuest, a growing control systems and automation company, has decided to close its operations in Nevada and Millersburg and put down roots in Albany.
The company specializes in creating technology for cardboard producers around the world. The new facility of approximately 30,000 square feet will include manufacturing, assembly, offices and sales.
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Plans to expand the workforce will not only add seven positions to Albany, but will also see an influx of “talent” from businesses in Nevada, Shelley said.
By spring or early summer, the company should be fully operational in Hub City, Shelley said.
And with that nickname in mind, Albany soon also became home to a manufacturing hub known as the Takena High-Tech Manufacturing Hub, spawning 12 companies, many of which were just getting started. Mr Sherry said.
The hub will have multiple partners, including Lynn-Benton Community College and Oregon State University.
“We’re filling a big hole in need,” Shelley said.
Space is limited in the Albany and Corvallis areas, he said. New businesses are looking for space and existing businesses are looking to expand.
The hub will begin construction this summer and is expected to be completed in 2023.
The two projects are expected to create over 200 direct and indirect jobs.
“Manufacturing brings new dollars to communities and creates a disproportionate number of jobs,” Shelley said.
As manufacturing thrives, so do other related services, such as other firms contracting to complete products and those providing materials and labor, Sherry said. Other local businesses are also sharing opportunities.
Manufacturing jobs are expected to bring more talent to Albany, mostly electrical engineers, Sherry added.
But they can also provide more financial mobility and opportunities for workers, according to Oregon Business and Industry research.
A report by Oregon Business and Industry found that households with manufacturing workers had lower poverty rates than those with non-manufacturing jobs.
The median earnings of full-time full-time manufacturing workers are 17% higher than the median earnings of full-time workers in other industries.
And from a revenue standpoint, working in manufacturing is like raising the level of Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) education.
“The degree returns are higher,” Shelley said.
BIPOC workers, like white workers, earn more in the manufacturing sector at all levels of education. However, according to the report, for BIPOC workers, the median earnings across all educational levels in manufacturing are equal to or higher than the median earnings in the next non-manufacturing education level.
Albany, with its history in the metal industry, has not undergone much change in its current economic structure. Sherry says there are already many manufacturing jobs. However, the various types of industries represented have created a more ‘healthy’ and stable economy.
“These two projects are huge achievements for Albany, and their success lays the foundation for all the success of our business in Albany,” he said.