On Wednesday morning, Sutphen Corporation held an official groundbreaking ceremony at its new project location at 935 S. Edgewood Ave., Urbana.
The new facility will have an area of 185,000 square meters and will be built on 55 hectares of former farmland – which offers plenty of space for future expansion. This new facility will bring three Urbana operations into one location, while retaining 160 jobs and creating an additional 20-25 jobs in Champaign County. The new plant is being built by Bruns General Contracting. Sutphen hopes to have the project completed by December 2022.
Founded in 1890, Sutphen is the largest family-run fire extinguishing equipment manufacturer in the United States.
“This new facility will be an incredible opportunity for our family business and the city of Urbana to grow together,” said Drew Sutphen, president of Sutphen Corporation, a fourth generation family member. “For the past 131 years, our family business has worked to build the safest and most reliable fire extinguishers in the world. This step will help our families do the same for the next 131 years.
“That was our passion for the last year and a half when we started this project,” continued Sutphen. “I want to thank everyone for coming. Urbana and Champaign County, the community and city officials really made it happen. “
Other family members also spoke at the ceremony.
“There are very few companies in the country and even in the world that have made it into the fourth generation,” said Vice President Julie Phelps Sutphen. “It’s about 2 percent or less. It came about through our father, grandfathers, and great-grandfathers who instilled strong family value and work ethic in all of us. That was important to us in the fourth generation in order to move on to the fifth. “
Local officials helped move the project forward, including city officials.
“I’m so excited. It was a long time coming,” said Urbana Mayor Bill Bean. “I have to thank the Urbana School Board. It’s so exciting to work with them to grow Urbana. They have a lot worked with the Champaign Economic Partnership. Since Sutphen is coming here, along with our other production, that’s our lifeblood. It’s wonderful to have the manufacturers that we have. “
“Good things in life don’t just happen,” said US MP Jim Jordan. “Getting things of importance and meaning that have real lasting value takes work, effort and sacrifice. Those are the qualities we are celebrating today. This amazing family has been around since 1890 and that doesn’t happen very often. “
From left to right: CEP Director Marcia Bailey, Sutphen Vice President Julie Sutphen Phelps, Sutphen President Drew Sutphen, Sutphen General Manager of Urbana Operations Todd Winnenberg, Urbana Fire Chief Dean Ortlieb and Mayor Bill Bean groundbreaking at the new project site on Wednesday.
Members of the Sutphen family officially break the ground on the new project site.
The groundbreaking ceremony for Sutphen took place on Wednesday at the new project location, 935 S. Edgewood Ave., Urbana.
A drawing shows the plan of the new facility.
On Edgewood Ave.
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