By SHERIDAN CYR
Economy Spring, a subsidiary of MW Industries, Inc., plans to relocate within town boundaries from its current location on DePaolo Drive to the old Pratt & Whitney facility on Queen Street in early 2019. The new 216,000 square foot facility will be more than twice the footprint of the existing facility.
The expansion is fueled by the rapid growth for Economy Spring’s coiled springs, wire forms and product assemblies sold to customers in medical and pharmaceutical applications.
“Economy Spring’s growth means we need more space to meet future customer demand,” Economy Spring senior vice president and general manager Tim Thompson said in a press release. “By selecting a facility just a mile down the road, we expect complete retention of our committed, technical and highly experiences workforce.”
Town Manager Mark Sciota said that it was a cooperative effort between municipal staff and elected boards that helped this move come to fruition. Sciota said it was a win-win for all involved.
“We have a Southington company that’s been around for a very long time,” he said. “They could’ve gone anywhere, but what do they do? They choose to expand in Southington and move into the Pratt & Whitney building.”
Not only is the company benefiting the town by staying local, but they also open a window of opportunity to invite a new business to town to make use of their old space.
In the past, there was talk and push for the Pratt & Whitney site to become a flea market site, but the Planning and Zoning Commission turned it down. Officials said that gamble paid off.
“Sometimes you have to be patient, and you have to wait,” said Democratic councilor John Barry. “This is really good news that this development is now expanding to a bigger facility here in town.”
Sciota said that staff and elected officials knew the site was a tax generator and didn’t want to “give it away.”
“We were patient despite pressure. With the right plan in place and some abatements by the state, it worked out for us,” said Sciota.
Republican councilor Victoria Triano said these operations don’t happen by accident, noting that boards and departments must work together. “It takes planning and cooperation,” she said. “I’m so grateful we are on the right track, and I hope it continues.”
The State of Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development provided a $3 million loan to help purchase equipment and secure relocation services. In the press release, Economy Spring officials thanked Edward Bona from the DECD, Lou Perillo from the Southington Economic Development office, Scott Bayne from Century 21 Bay-Mar realty, along with state senators Joe Markley and Paul Doyle, and Speaker of the House Joe Aresimowicz.
“MW Industries is committed to investing in Economy Spring. The products are part of a broad market basket of precision metal components designed to meet the needs of customers in medical and industrial markets,” MW Industries CEO John Bagnuolo said in the press release. “We are proud to be expanding manufacturing in Connecticut.”
Company officials said that equipment is expected to be moved in various stages during 2018 and 2019 with no anticipated operational impact to customers.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Sheridan Cyr, email her at SCyr@SouthingtonObserver.com.