Nucor Steel will be able to make products in Tuscaloosa that no other plant in the United States can create after a $280 million expansion of their plant here.

The growth was announced after the Tuscaloosa County Economic Development Authority approved tax incentives for the quarter-billion-dollar project Thursday afternoon.

The TCEDA said Nucor is the largest steel and steel products producer in the US and this expansion will add a new product to their offerings that is not currently manufactured anywhere else domestically - a thin, strong plate to be made at Nucor's plant on Holt Road.

While the expansion is not expected to create any new jobs, it does represent a $280 million investment. Construction on the project to install a new rolling mill is expected to begin before year's end.

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“The investment at the rolling mill at Tuscaloosa is important to keep our mill competitive in the global steel industry and open up new market opportunities for our team. We appreciate the support we have received from the Tuscaloosa County Economic Development Authority for this project,” said Brian Phillippi, Vice President and General Manager of Nucor Steel Tuscaloosa.

TCEDA Chairman Norman Crow said Nucor is not just a major employer and exporter, they are also a strong community partner who have donated more than $3 million to local charities in the last decade.

“For almost 20 years, Nucor Steel Tuscaloosa has excelled at producing quality products, creating high‐paying jobs, and prioritizing philanthropic activities throughout our community,” Crow said. “This project demonstrates Nucor’s long‐term commitment to Tuscaloosa County and its citizens, for which we will reap the benefits for years to come.”

In a presentation to the TCEDA, Nucor said all their work relies on their rolling mill, which was installed in the late 1960s. Installing a new one - an unfathomably large, 500-ton machine - will not only expand operations but also ensure the plant can stay online if the aging original mill comes offline for any reason.

By giving Nucor that redundancy, the TCEDA says they are protecting the more than 400 jobs that exist at the plant today.

“The County Commission is pleased to see Nucor expand their operations in Tuscaloosa County, retaining a significant number of high‐paying jobs,” said Probate Judge Rob Robertson. “Enhancing our domestic steel production capabilities is critical to sustain our national economic productivity. Nucor’s latest investment not only bolsters their capabilities locally, but showcases Tuscaloosa County globally.”

The TCEDA board approved an incentive package that will abate the non‐educational sales and use taxes for purchases of equipment and building materials during the construction phase of the project as well as an abatement of the non‐educational ad valorem taxes on certain real and personal property for up to 10 years - an estimated $16.8 million abatement.

This massive undertaking will take years, and the new rolling mill is expected to come fully online in Summer 2027.

“Nucor has investments in over 300 operating facilities in North America, and we are proud that the Tuscaloosa facility has been awarded this new business,” said Justice Smyth, TCEDA executive director. “In today’s global market, companies have a wealth of opportunities regarding where and how to invest in operations. Today’s announcement underscores Nucor’s confidence in our partnership and our people.”

Top Stories from the Tuscaloosa Thread (11/6 - 11/13)

13 of the Top Stories published by the Tuscaloosa Thread during the week of November 6th, 2023

Gallery Credit: (Stephen Dethrage | Tuscaloosa Thread)