Longtime Lake Norman area manufacturer Blum Inc. plans to invest $18.5million in equipment upgrades and expansion of its eastern Lincoln County plant over the next two years.
Most of the investment will be in assembly equipment for the company's new line of concealed hinges for kitchen cabinets, said Karl Ruedisser, CEO and president of Blum US. The hinges are now made at a Blum plant in Austria, he said.
The investment also will pay for upgrading Blum's local technical support center, Ruedisser said.
Blum has operated in eastern Lincoln County for about 30 years. The company designs and manufactures concealed hinges, lift systems and drawer runner systems for kitchen cabinets and commercial equipment.
It also builds and maintains the machines that assemble the products. Blum, which operates 24 hours a day, will hire eight more workers with the expansion.
At its Feb. 21 regular meeting, the Lincoln County Board of Commissioners approved an incentive request made by the Lincoln Economic Development Association on behalf of Blum Inc. The company qualified for a $281,670 grant that will be distributed in equal amounts over five years.
Duke Energy performing right-of-way work
MOORESVILLE Duke Energy is doing right-of-way work this month around its electrical distribution lines in the Brawley School Road area, from its substation to beyond the Point community and along Yacht, Torrence Chapel and Stonemarker roads and Tuskarora Trail.
Duke will attempt to contact customers at least 48 hours before any work is scheduled on their property.
Property owners with questions can call general foreman Keith Hondlik of Asplundh Tree Experts at 704-652-2004 or Duke Energy forester Rick Owens at 704-866-5126.
Our Towns needs homebuilding volunteers
CORNELIUS Our Towns Habitat for Humanity needs volunteers to help build eight homes in Cornelius this year.
Volunteers are needed for home construction and to provide snacks and lunches, donate new construction materials and provide family counseling and support.
Details: Cathy Petriano at 704-896-8957, ext. 108; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Columns being installed on huge video board
CONCORD The third phase of construction began in late February on the world's largest high-definition video board, which is scheduled for completion in time for Charlotte Motor Speedway's race events in May.
Crews have begun installing the 500,000-pound steel frame that will support the 165,000-pound video board. The work is being done by from Granite Contracting of Concord, Mid-Atlantic Construction of Charlotte and Eastern Sign Tech of Burlington, N.J.
Workers started building six 30-foot-tall steel columns galvanized by Galvan Industries of Harrisburg. Each column weighs 18,500 pounds and is being attached to concrete footings, speedway spokesman Scott Cooper said.
Crews are using an 80-ton crane with a 100-foot arm to move the massive support columns into place, Cooper said.
The screen, about 200 feet wide and 80 feet tall, will eventually rise 110 feet above the track on the steel support structure.
A crew from EA Electric of Brooks, Ga., began running the electrical cables to power the more than nine million LED lamps that will illuminate the Panasonic video board during each NASCAR race event this spring, including the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race on May 21 and the Coca-Cola 600 on May 29.
Crews have removed 900 cubic yards of dirt by drilling 12 holes, each 54 inches in diameter, to a depth of more than 50 feet down to bedrock level. They installed concrete piers in the holes to support the massive steel frame, Cooper said. When finished, the total structure will weigh 332 tons, or 665,000 pounds - more than four times as heavy as the entire field of cars in the Coca-Cola 600 race.
Cabarrus women builders win national awards
The Professional Women in Building Council of the Cabarrus County Building Industry Association received three national awards from the National Association of Home Builders' Professional Women in Building Council recently.
The council won second place for community outreach, first place for legislative and political action and the national award for Best Small Size Council.
The local council received plaques and scholarships to award to students who will pursue careers in building industry trades.
Council members are president Anna Helms, vice president Kim Haynes, secretary Beth Livengood and members Ann Adams, Susanne Biedler, Mary Ann Brafford, Chelsea Cote, Leslie Frankwick, Sara Hagg, Cristi Lewis, Lucille Metts and Janet Schultz.