Electric Boat employees joined state, local and federal officials today at the company’s Groton Shipyard to mark the groundbreaking of a new facility dedicated to the construction of the Columbia-class of submarines.
The South Yard Assembly Building (SYAB), a 200,000 square-foot building, will eventually be home to 1,400 shipbuilders who will deliver the Columbia-class to the U.S. Navy. The SYAB is the centerpiece of an $850 million expansion at the company’s Groton Shipyard.
The company will also expand and update other manufacturing spaces and build a floating dry dock to launch Columbia submarines.
U.S. House Rep. Joe Courtney (D) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D) both worked to help bring the expansion to the region.
“Men and women not yet born will be working here producing ships that are necessary for our national defense,” Blumenthal said. “It will enable people have skills, careers, families in this part of the state and throughout Connecticut.”
“We hope to continue to hire and train thousands of new employees and will help grow our supply base of more than 3,000 companies to ensure the successful execution of the Columbia program,” said Jeffrey S. Geiger, president of General Dynamics Electric Boat.
In total, General Dynamics Electric Boat will invest more than $1.7 billion to modernize and upgrade its facilities over the next decade.
In addition to the facilities in Groton, the company is investigating $700 million at its location in Quonset Point, Rhode Island.
Rolling Tomato is one of several businesses set to benefit from the latest expansion at Electric Boat.
David Santacroce is a manager at Rolling Tomato and is excited about the opportunities.
“It’s good for the area, it’s good for local businesses,” said Santacroce. “It means more taxes, more revenue for the town and us.”
All incentives for Groton as construction continues for the South Yard Assembly building.
Nearly one-third of the work force is set to retire and the goal is to focus to make sure the first Columbia-class is finished by 2027 for the Navy.
Mayor Keith Hedrick is focusing on the next generation of workers.
“There’s a forecasted work at Electric boat for the next 30 years,” Hedrick said . “It’s tremendous for high school students who want to immediately start their careers.”
Construction is underway and set to be completed in early 2023.