The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation held an informal meeting in Sturtevant, Wisconsin on Tuesday for construction businesses interested in working on the $10 billion Foxconn Technology Group complex to talk with M+WǀGilbane , the joint venture between Gilbane Building Co. and M+W Group acting as the general contractor on the Foxconn project.
Gilbane representatives, including Adam Jelen, senior vice president of Gilbane Building Co.’s Central Midwest Division, were greeted by almost 500 companies interested in providing materials and services for the project. Foxconn has committed to spending $1.4 billion with Wisconsin-based vendors. Jelen assured the audience that no contractors have been hired and said Foxconn also has committed to total transparency in how it will do business with other companies. “There’s no inside ballgame here, folks,” he said. “No one’s being shut out.”
The project is expected to create 10,000 construction jobs. Of those jobs the M+WǀGilbane has set a number of benchmarks related to the types of businesses and employees it contracts with during the construction process.
Those benchmarks include working with 60 percent Wisconsin-based companies, 10 percent Racine County-based companies, and a combined 10 percent minority-, woman- and veteran-owned companies.
Additionally, M+WǀGilbane wants Wisconsin workers to complete 70 percent of the work hours on the project and minority, female and veteran workers logging a combined 10 percent of the overall work hours.
M+WǀGilbane emphasized the first thing they will look at in considering a bid is whether it has a plan for inclusion of the targeted groups. Bids without a plan will not be considered on the private sector side of the project.
Both union and non-union workers will be included in the hiring. The project is an open job that is not governed by a project labor agreement.
The first bid package for the project, covering mass excavation, erosion control, storm water and soil testing, was released over the weekend. The plan is for some construction work to begin later this month or in May. Vertical building construction will likely start in the second half of the year or early next year.
Tuesday’s event was the first of 12 contractor information sessions to be held around the state. The events are the first step in bidding on parts of the Foxconn project. Companies will also have to register with M+WǀGilbane and attend pre-bid matchmaking sessions.
Companies interested in working on the project should visit wisconvalley.wi.gov.