City grant helps Windsor Mold expand

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

The Windsor Star/Craig Pearson

In part thanks to a grant from the city over the next decade, Windsor Mold is building a 27,000-square-foot expansion that should eventually lead to 20 more jobs.

The international parts and tooling company has added 65 jobs over the last five years, according to an administration report that went this week to the city’s planning committee — which unanimously endorsed the recommended tax break. City council must still approve the grant.

“It’s great news,” senior planner Greg Atkinson said Wednesday. “They’re a good fit for the program.”

Windsor Mold’s expansion will increase the assessed value of its facility at 4035 Malden Rd. by about $1 million, meaning it would owe an extra $71,000-plus in property taxes every year. The recommendation, however, is for the city to give back the extra tax for 10 years, amounting to a grant of more than $710,000.

This is the 17th application for such a grant by a Windsor business since 2011, when the city created its economic revitalization community improvement plan. Atkinson thinks things are starting to turn around in the local manufacturing sector.

“Anecdotally, we’re certainly seeing a lot more industrial development in the city,” he said. “A lot of vacant facilities have been filled up. There’s a demand for employees and for the space to accommodate new machines.

“It seems to be doing much better than it has in the past, in part due to incentive programs like the economic revitalization CIP.”

A letter from the Windsor Mold Group as part of the grant application says the tax break played “a key role” in encouraging the company to reinvest in the community. Windsor Mold has bought a property immediately to its north to accommodate the expansion and addition of computer-controlled machinery. Windsor Mold has nine facilities in Ontario, the United States and Mexico.

Since manufacturing is shifting to the southern U.S. and Mexico, according to the Windsor Mold letter, “it is vital for Windsor that support is available to accelerate our expansion plans by offsetting some of the costs associated with infrastructure investments to ensure a sustainable future in manufacturing in Canada.”