Vitro will invest $93.6 million in upgrading its Meadville Plant located in Cochranton, Pennsylvania, and create approximately 130 new high-quality jobs.
Vitro’s investment will rebuild and modernize a production line at its Meadville Plant located in Cochranton to support First Solar’s growing manufacturing footprint in the United States. The investment will also include the construction of offline production capabilities.
“This agreement is a true manifestation of Vitro’s purpose of enabling the full potential of glass to shape how we move, build, and live today and in the future. It also reflects our continued commitment to the North American Trade Region and is proof that we have a sound strategy for growth as a global player. We are thrilled by how, through this partnership, we will serve the U.S. market with new and better sustainable products while advancing our strategy to drive growth in the renewable energy sector,” said Vitro CEO, Adrian Sada.
Vitro’s investment in the Meadville Plant is expected to provide First Solar with a vital domestic source of float glass, which is a significant component of the company’s advanced thin film solar panels. Since August 2022, First Solar, the largest solar manufacturer in the Western Hemisphere, has embarked on an expansion plan that is expected to grow its existing annual nameplate capacity from approximately 6 gigawatts (GW)DC currently to over 10 GWDC by 2025, by expanding its capacity in Ohio and adding a new manufacturing facility in Alabama.
Vitro’s Meadville plant is strategically located to serve First Solar’s production and already has the necessary raw materials required to support their production. Production is expected to begin in the second quarter of 2025, resulting in the creation of approximately 130 full-time jobs.
“Congratulations to Vitro on this future-focused investment that is creating direct and downstream jobs in Pennsylvania. Under the leadership of President and PA Chamber Board Director Ricardo Maiz, Vitro is leading the way toward a sustainable economic future and driving the future of manufacturing right here in the commonwealth,” said PA Chamber President and CEO Luke Bernstein.
Spark Therapeutics Invest In Gene Therapy Innovation Center
Spark Therapeutics broke ground in February on a 500,000 square foot, six-story cell and gene therapy center that will serve as the Philadelphia-based global center for Roche, and is one of many projects to bring more lab space to the region.
The cell and gene therapy center, slated to be completed in 2026, will provide in-house manufacturing for Spark. The new space will allow cross-functional teams and partners to come together and work side by side, to realize the full potential of gene therapy with unprecedented collaboration. Spark’s lease for the land is for 99 years, it said in 2021.
EMD Electronics Invests Millions In Eastern Pennsylvania
EMD Electronics will invest around $300 million to expand its specialty gas production facility in Hometown, Pennsylvania.
The semiconductor specialty gases manufacturing facility will create nearly 200 jobs in Schuylkill County, including 68 permanent, union jobs. As part of its investment, EMD Electronics—a global leader in semiconductor and electronics manufacturing—will build a new 96,500-square-foot facility, creating the largest integrated specialty gases facility in the world.
“We have been the employer of choice in Hometown for almost 50 years. Our commitment to level up our business in Schuylkill County bodes well for the community and its global impact on the semiconductor industry,” said President of EMD Electronics Jeff White. “We appreciate the efforts on the part of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to recognize the value of our growth plans and work with us to make this expansion possible.”
The new facilities will allow EMD Electronics to meet surging demand in the electronics and semiconductor industries by doubling the production capacity of tungsten hexafluoride and nitrogen trifluoride, critical components in semiconductor manufacturing.
“We are planting a flag and sending a clear message to the world that Pennsylvania is open for business,” said Governor Shapiro. “We have enormous potential here in Pennsylvania to be an economic leader and drive innovation on a global scale. Investments in projects like this one further prove this point. EMD Electronics is expanding and bringing more jobs to Schuylkill County. Let’s work together to make more projects like this possible. The entire Shapiro Administration stands ready to promote that growth and ensure we make Pennsylvania a leader in economic development and opportunity.”
EMD Electronics received a funding proposal from the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) for a $1,062,500 Pennsylvania First grant and a $122,000 workforce development grant to train workers. The company has committed to creating 68 new jobs and retaining 289 existing, full-time jobs at its Schuylkill County location within the next five years. Approximately 120 jobs will be created to help with the construction of the new facility.