Governor Allen Hails Start of Motorola Construction
-- Phase One Commitment Doubles to $3 Billion & 2,500 Jobs - - Virginia Becomes Company's Growth Cent-
Richmond - Governor George Allen today joined Robert W. Galvin, Chairman of Motorola Inc.'s Executive Committee of the Board of Directors, to announce Motorola's decision to begin construction of its Goochland County semiconductor manufacturing campus during the second quarter of 1998. Today's announcement more than doubles the size of the facility from the company's original commitment for Phase One development, from $1.5 billion and 1,000 jobs originally announced in September 1995 to $3 billion and 2,500 new jobs. Motorola also announced its decision to purchase an additional 140 acres in the West Creek campus.
"The West Creek campus represents the largest single initial investment in the history of Motorola," said Chairman Galvin. "We will continue to look aggressively at the West Creek campus in Virginia as our center for growth in semiconductor production."
"Motorola's enormously fantastic decision to construct the semiconductor fabrication plant in West Creek signaled a new era of semiconductor manufacturing leadership in Virginia, and helped establish our new reputation as the Silicon Dominion," said Governor Allen. "Motorola's decision to double their investment and moreover, increase the capabilities of their semiconductor plant is the best Christmas present in the history of Virginia. When a company of Motorola's stature chooses Virginia for its most comprehensive plant and largest single initial investment, it sends a message around the world that Virginia is now and will be the Silicon Dominion for many decades to come."
Site preparation at West Creek will resume in the first quarter of 1998. Construction of five buildings, including a wafer fabrication facility containing a major research and development laboratory, will begin during the second quarter of 1998. Bill Walker, Corporate Vice President and Director of Manufacturing for the Motorola Semiconductor Products Sector, expects manufacturing equipment to be installed in late 1999 and that shipments of products to customers will begin by mid-2000. Additional expansions after this phase are anticipated now that Motorola has affirmed its commitment to the Richmond area.
Today's news comes soon after Manassas-based Dominion Semiconductor (IBM & Toshiba) began producing semiconductor chips at its $1.7 billion facility in September and Henrico County's White Oak Semiconductor (Siemens & Motorola) installation of its first manufacturing tools at its $1.5 billion plant in October.
The December 8, 1997, edition of Fortune magazine highlighted the Commonwealth's success in the semiconductor industry in an article titled "The Race to Build and Staff America's Chip Plants." The article credited Virginia's highly-educated and trainable workforce as a reason why Governor Allen has been so successful in recruiting semiconductor manufacturing firms to Virginia.
Governor Allen also today announced that he will include $8 million in his 1998-2000 biennial budget to provide funding for the endowment supporting microelectronics research and education at Virginia's institutes of higher learning, helping ensure the skilled workers necessary for Virginia's growing semiconductor industry. Governor Allen established this microelectronics endowment in his 1996-1998 biennial budget.
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