Palmer chosen for new manufacturing site
By 11/06/2003 00:00:00
The Ellis County Press
PALMER - The City of Palmer has been chosen as the new national headquarters for Santa Regina International Ltd., a manufacturer of concrete tiles.
Carlos Fonts, director of operations, told the city council on Tuesday, Palmer was chosen as the site for their new 60,000 square foot manufacturing facility because, 'We felt welcomed here.'
The elder Fonts said, 'This is a family-owned and operated business' and then introduced the members of his extended family who were in attendance.
He expressed his appreciation of Palmer as being a well established, family-oriented community.
He told the council local citizens would have priority when jobs created at the new facility become available.
Fonts also elaborated on the positive aspects of his manufacturing plant. The plant would not utilize or process any hazardous materials and the production process does not rely on autoclaving (heating) of the base materials.
According to Fonts, the production process is also very environmentally friendly, when it comes to the utilization of local water resources.
The process uses water for lubricating the saws and polishers on the finishing line.
'The production process looses only one percent of the water used for production through evaporation and the remainder is recycled and recirculated,' Fonts said.
The building will also be equipped with a rooftop water collection system to supplement the local water supply used for production.
The plant will produce engineered marble and granite floor tiles and relies on core equipment of Italian manufacture, but Fonts was quick to point out, 'the racks, vats, elevators and other equipment used in the manufacturing process will be acquired through regional suppliers.'
He indicated local suppliers would be utilized wherever possible.
Currently, the equipment is scheduled to arrive in late April.
'It will take several weeks to install and production operations will begin in May or June,' Fonts said.
The plant will employ as many as 30 to 35 people in its first year of production, but building plans allow for expansion capabilities that would double floor space, should expansion be necessary.
The plant will also feature a showroom, incorporated into the business offices, that will allow architects and engineers to visibly observe how the products integrate into building design.
Eventually, plans call for an expanded list of production capabilities with sales being open to the general public as inventory allows.