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New buildings and renovations of many existing facilities at the General Motors Technical Center - a $1 billion investment - will lead to 2, 600 new jobs at the sprawling, historic campus, the automaker announced Thursday.

This is an investment in our people who work at the Tech Center because it is positioning the company for long-term growth by enabling new levels of innovation and collaboration into our workplace, said Mark Reuss, GM executive vice president, Global Product Development and Purchasing and Supply Chain, in a prepared statement. We will transform this campus into a collaborative workplace of choice for our current team and future talent.

Then, with more than 200 people looking on at the Vehicle Engineering Center building on Van Dyke, Reuss said: Frankly, its an investment in excellence.

The massive project is the first widespread upgrade of facilities at the 326-acre complex, designed by world-renowned architect Eero Saarinen which opened in 1956. It includes:

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Construction of new design studios and a new parking deck for design employees.

Rebuilding and renovating some existing research and development facilities.

A new multi-story information technology building adjacent to the current Michigan IT Innovation Center and a new parking deck.

New testing areas at the Advanced Energy Center.

Extensive office upgrades.

The project, performed in phases, is expected to be completed in 2018. Work has already started. The first activity is the expansion of the pre-production operations body shop, located in the former Chevrolet central office building, south of Chicago Road.

Gov. Rick Snyder said the project is further evidence of Michigans rebound.

We need to say Thank you on behalf of all Michiganders, Snyder said.

Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel praised GM for its commitment to the county and southeast Michigan, adding the region will benefit.

Thats an incredible start to the future of the auto industry, he said. I think incredible attention will be drawn to the state of Michigan. What General Motors is doing is an incredible commitment to employees.

Warren Mayor James Fouts also lauded GM - the largest taxpayer in Warren and Macomb County - for its investment. He hopes new workers will make their homes in the city and encouraged employees in the crowd Thursday to buy a home in Warren if theyre not residents already.

We did everything we could in City Hall to encourage GMs expansion, he said.

That included a tax abatement approved by the Warren City Council a few weeks ago. The tax break will cut the amount of new property tax revenue generated by the new construction by 50 percent for 12 years.

The mayor said the city has received some very serious interest from developers eyeing the portions of Warrens downtown district, specifically city-owned parcels across Van Dyke from the Tech Center that have remained empty for years. Fouts did not identify potential developers but said one idea includes a four- or six-story upscale hotel he believes would be a good fit for persons staying in town to conduct business at the Technical Center.

Reuss said the first influx of hires may start in September. Also that month, some employees at the Technical Center working in traditional office spaces will be moved temporarily during construction and renovation to the former Campbell-Ewald building, located on Van Dyke and purchased by GM after the advertising firm relocated its Michigan headquarters to downtown Detroit. In all, approximately 800 people could be working at that building at any period.

He encouraged the 19, 000 people who work at the campus to be patient regarding the inconveniences that will be caused by construction activity. He hopes workers will only have to be relocated once from one part of campus to another during the renovations and as new facilities go up.

There isnt one of them that wont positively benefit in the end, he said. The biggest winners, said Reuss, will be GM customers who will benefit in the form of better vehicle design there and the companys confidence in attracting top-notch workers.

Were not here to be competitive - were here to win, he said.

Initial construction of the Technical Center began in 1949. In 1986, the American Institute of Architects honored the Technical Center as the most outstanding architectural project of its era. In 2000, the campus was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Last year, it was named a national historic landmark by the Department of the Interior and the National Park Service.

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Q&A

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Do you know what Gimisca division of GM does at the Warren, MI Tech Center? | Yahoo Answers

It's GMISCA. That's General Motors Information Systems and Communications Activity. In other words, they're the computer guys.
Here's info on the Tech Center:


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