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TenCate to expand Zebulon facility, add new jobs

A recent groundbreaking took place for a 14,000-square-foot expansion of the TenCate Protective Fabrics plant in Zebulon. The $3 million dollar project is projected to increase efficiency and create six new positions for the company as the installation of new equipment will require trained workers to operate the machinery. ’We are glad we are getting to expand, adding some jobs and growing the business. It’s fantastic,’ said TenCate’s VP of operations Mike Anderson. ‘Protective fabrics is really the future of fabrics so we may be seeing a lot of growth in different areas at our facilities.’ Anderson noted that fabrics created by TenCate are some of the few fabrics that are sent overseas to Asian markets, as most fabrics in the United States are imported from overseas. During the planning stages of the Zebulon facility’s new expansion, it was discovered that a major hurdle was going to be the installation of a six inch gas pipe from the current terminus point at the Pike County Library down to the plant location on Highway 19.  ’In a major cooperative effort consisting of TenCate, the Pike County Commissioners Office, The Development Authority of Pike County and Paul Teague of Atlanta Gas Light, it was negotiated that the estimated $139,000 expense for the gas line would be covered in full by Atlanta Gas Light,’ said TenCate weaving plant manager Kevin Hilton. The cooperative effort between local entities will benefit more businesses in the future and make the county more appealing to businesses. ’They recognized that the unique collaborative spirit between the parties involved in this endeavor would be a great platform to build future business on and Atlanta Gas Light wants to be part of that growth here in Pike County,’ said county manager John Hanson. ‘The growth and expansion of existing industry is an important factor when new companies look for areas to locate and we are proud to showcase the hard work and success of the local TenCate plant in this partnership.’ The addition to the Zebulon plant will be on the north side of the existing building and will allow for the installation of new equipment and hiring of new employees. There are four TenCate plants in the area – including a plant in Molena – and together they produce flame resistant materials used for fabrics for emergency responders, electrical and oil refinery workers, the military and more. ’Our whole goal is to use fibers that are inherently flame resistant so we don’t use chemicals to make the fabrics flame retardant,’ said Hilton. ‘It is the hope of TenCate that these new positions will be filled by locals who are looking to invest themselves in the community.’

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