The walls on the 55,000 square foot expansion started going up a few weeks ago, but company owners and state and local economic development officials still gathered Thursday at Currier Plastics in Auburn to throw some dirt around with gleaming shovels.
Currier was ceremonially breaking ground on an expansion paid for in part with state aid won during the first round of the Regional Economic Development Councils.
In business since 1982, Currier makes plastic caps and containers for things like shampoo and laundry detergent.
It's a growth industry, according to company president John Currier. He says the expansion will allow the plastic maker to double its capacity and add a few dozen jobs over the next few years.
But Currier says that expansion almost didn't happen in Auburn.
"Expanding in New York state has its complexities. Years ago it was not only very difficult, but not very advantageous," he said. "We’re absolutely thrilled with the way New York state acted when we said we wanted to expand."
The company considered putting a second facility or relocating completely to another state.
Currier approached the state about expansion plans last year and in December it won $1.75 million through the regional councils program. It's also using about $20 million in private investments.
The process of getting aid was much easier than expected, Currier said.
"Almost like one-stop shopping," he said. "And that really made things easier. We’re manufacturers; we’re very good at making plastic products, but this expansion was really very new to us."
Down the road a little ways from Currier, in Elbridge, sits Tessy Plastics. They're not direct competitors, says Currier, but they've been expanding recently too.
Possible signs central New York may have a growing plastics industry.