New Trane Technologies building nearing completion
TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Friday will be the one-year anniversary of the building collapse at Trane Technologies in Tyler. Building 9 caved in from snow accumulation, leaving it destroyed. They stood that building up in about 1983, according to Robert Rivers, the plant manager for Tyler operations.
Only five weeks after the collapse, Rivers said they were able to stand up their first of two new assembly lines in an existing facility, but it was cramped.
“We knew, long-term, we had to rebuild. We spend time really analyzing the footprint of where it was, and that’s why, ultimately, we decided to build on the opposite side of the plant in order to optimize for growth and set ourselves up for the future,” Rivers said.
Today, a new building has been built. The exterior of the building is complete, and final touches are being done on the inside.
“This building is just shy of 200,000 square feet. The existing building was 115,000 feet. Ultimately, we will move all of our assembly operations into this building,” Rivers said. “So, we will finally land with eight production lines in here and maybe one or two left in the old building, but the majority of our assembly will be in this operation.”
Rivers said the new building is state of the art and will benefit employees and customers.
“They’re actually going to come through the turnstiles here, and they’re right there at their facility. We also have better, upgraded locker rooms. Right now, our locker rooms are kind of spread out into the plant now,” Rivers said. “So, they’ll come in and immediately have their locker rooms where they can keep their personal items, etc. Then just a state-of-the-art production environment.”
Rivers said they are looking at their first production line starting at the end of February. The second line could begin in mid-March. The full transition of all eight lines will take closer to a year and a half to two years.
“After the year that we’ve had, the things that we’ve overcome, I wouldn’t change it. We are so much better off. Especially now looking at this facility and what we know it represents from a growth and a commitment standpoint and the investment that we’re making into the community here. We’re much better off than what we were last year,” Rivers said.
While insurance is covering a portion of the costs, Rivers said they also made a significant investment to set themselves up for future growth.
KLTV & KTRE are looking back at how East Texans weathered the historic winter storm of 2021 and how life has changed a year later. Click here for special content on our ‘Storm of the Century: One Year Later’ page.
Copyright 2022 KLTV. All rights reserved.