Construction is underway at the new GAF roofing and manufacturing plant in Peru, a site that will bring in new jobs for the city.
GAF Commercial Roofing is the largest roofing and waterproofing manufacturer in North America. In July, GAF announced it chose Peru as a site to build an $80 million, 450,000 square foot manufacturing facility.
Construction on the site began shortly after the announcement was made. Director of Engineering and Zoning Eric Carls said there’s been construction and activity at the site since then.
“It’s employing a lot of people, and it’s a great project,” Carls said. “It’s a very organized operation.”
Carls said there are 50 to 70 people working on the site every day. On average, he said there are 12 different companies working on it in every trade — concrete workers, operators, carpenters — are all represented.
Construction involves putting up exterior walls and beginning steel work. After the exterior walls are complete, roofing is expected to begin in late February. Once that’s completed, interior construction will start. In the spring, other site improvements such as building roadways, landscaping and parking, will take place.
Construction is planned to continue through the winter, and Carls said he anticipates most of the building and the site will be done by middle to late summer.
Commissioning is expected to begin in the fall and winter, including hiring and training new staff, Carls said. He expects to see products coming from the manufacturing plant in spring of 2024, when it will be fully operational.
The plant will manufacture the company’s EnergyGuard line of polyisocyanurate (polyiso) insulation products. The new plant also will have enhanced technologies to manufacture custom and tapered design polyiso insulation, as well as composite polyiso insulation board, which will be a new offering from GAF.
“Peru is an ideal location for us to expand polyiso production and continue innovating to meet our customer’s current and future needs,” said a GAF spokesperson. “This facility marks GAF’s fifth polyiso plant which is expected to bring advanced manufacturing and engineering jobs to the Peru community.”
Carls said it’s exciting to see the project come together, especially after so much time was spent planning it on paper.
“It’s a really exciting development that will bring good, well paying jobs to the city,” Carls said.
The city and GAF representatives have a great relationship, Carls said, and they conduct periodic check-ins on the plant’s progress.
This past spring, the Peru City Council agreed to extend water and sewer utilities, construct a roadway, repave an existing roadway, adopt a tax increment financing district and sell parcels of land it acquired to GAF as part of an economic development agreement. The idea is to generate at least 70 well-paying jobs.
For information, go to GAF.com/Careers.