ESCANABA – The Michigan Department of Transportation Office of Economic Development announced that an estimated $250,000 will be invested in transportation improvements to Mead Road or County Road 59 to accommodate new construction of a chemical plant near the Escanaba Paper Mill.
MDOT says the road, which is currently an all-season route, is severely deteriorated, has inadequate shoulders and poor drainage. Mead Road will be utilized by Omya’s commercial and employee traffic to access the company’s new multi-million dollar plant which is currently under construction.
“We will be receiving supplies of lime from Graymont Lime up the coast at Port Inland. It requires that truckloads of lime be delivered on a daily basis. The county has agreed to fix the road to accommodate the trucks that will be coming through the back gate to the paper mill to our PCC plant,” said Steve Stueck, director of marketing at Omya Inc.
Omya is a producer of Precipitated Calcium Carbonate (PCC) for use in the manufacturing of paper. Stueck anticipates that construction of the plant at the NewPage Escanaba paper mill site will be completed by June 23, about a week ahead of schedule.
“We were anxious to get started with the building and concrete before winter set in and thankfully our folks were able to do that. We were able to work inside throughout the winter and deliver it on time,” Stueck said.
The plant will create seven new jobs.
In addition to Omya traffic, all logging trucks accessing the paper mill currently use Mead Road to make deliveries and leave the mill.
The transportation improvements include $200,000 in state TEDF funds and $50,300 from the Delta County Road Commission.