Foxconn

Teran Powell

Six months ago, Across the Divide: Next Steps for Foxconn convened a panel to discuss initial questions about the massive manufacturing facility coming to Racine County. Since then, developments have happened at a breathtaking pace. The first $100 million in construction contracts have been announced, with most of that going to Wisconsin companies, and some are asking how political connections affected those awards.

Maayan Silver

Foxconn is promising thousands of jobs in construction, and once the massive factory in Mount Pleasant is complete, in information technology and manufacturing.

Others are wondering whether people who need the jobs most will get them, like those on Milwaukee's north and south sides.

Tech colleges and workforce development organizations point to community organizations as the grassroots touchpoint to reach minority workers.

Susan Bence

Foxconn's massive manufacturing project slated to take shape in what is currently rural Racine County successfully jumped through two major environmental hoops this week.

Water Diversion

Wednesday, the City of Racine’s request to divert Lake Michigan water and deliver it to the Taiwanese-owned LCD plant got the green light.

The request has received a lot of attention and raised a great deal of concern among critics.

Maayan Silver

This spring, Foxconn will begin preparing for construction of its massive LCD screen manufacturing plant in Racine County.

During phase one of construction, buildings will go up beginning late this year or early next year.

As planning progresses, the Taiwanese company is conducting information sessions around the state to explain to businesses how to bid for construction-related contracts.

FOXCONN, TWITTER

When the State of Wisconsin announced a deal with the tech manufacturing company Foxconn, many Wisconsinites were first struck by the price tag. The initial announcement of $3 billion dollars in subsidies, was the largest subsidy in the state’s history.

By some estimates that number has since risen to $4 billion dollars. But as the plans for the factory move forward, more residents have become concerned about some of the other aspects of this deal. Some are concerned about the plant’s intense water needs, others have raised issues with the types of jobs they will be providing.

Marti Mikkelson

One of Gov. Walker’s erstwhile top lieutenants defended the Foxconn deal at a luncheon Tuesday in downtown Milwaukee. Former Department of Administration Secretary Scott Neitzel spoke to a couple hundred people at the Rotary Club. While Neitzel assured the crowd of the Foxconn promise, some were skeptical.

Neitzel retired from the post last month, after helping to secure the agreement with Foxconn. He says he was honored to help the Taiwanese company build a huge LCD screen manufacturing plant in Racine County. Neitzel insists the deal will protect Wisconsin taxpayers.

About four weeks ago so many people crowded the SC Johnson iMet Center in Sturtevant, they had to be shuttled in from a nearby movie theater parking lot.

The topic of that hearing was the City of Racine’s request to divert Lake Michigan water so that Foxconn can pump up to 7 million gallons a day to feed its water-intensive manufacturing system.

SEWRPC

As Foxconn gets closer to breaking ground in Racine County, the next task is to determine how people who don’t live near the LCD screen plant might get to the campus.

Representatives of the regional planning commission outlined potential options -- and costs -- at a public transportation review board meeting Wednesday in Milwaukee.

Susan Bence / Milwaukee Public Radio

While advocates of bringing Foxconn to Mount Pleasant stood behind delivering Lake Michigan water to the plant, people in the crowd at the public hearing Wednesday remained unconvinced.

In order to get water to Foxconn, the Racine Water Utility hopes to pipe Lake Michigan water from the Great Lakes basin across Racine County, into the Mississippi River basin that eventually drains into the Gulf of Mexico.

Critics of the Foxconn plant coming to Racine County often have complained that there’s no way for many workers from Milwaukee to get there. So, Milwaukee County Board Chairman Theo Lipscomb is proposing a new bus service to transport people from the city to the plant.

While testifying before the Milwaukee County Board’s transportation committee on Wednesday, Lipscomb said it’s an exciting time for Milwaukee and urged the county not to pass up an opportunity to get involved in the effort to connect area workers to Foxconn jobs.

Susan Bence / Milwaukee Public Radio

The Taiwanese-owned LCD manufacturing facility will require loads of water for its production process. The Racine Water Utility wants to extend service to provide that water.

Foxconn's massive campus will be located where I-94 and Highway 11 intersect in Mount Pleasant.

Marti Mikkelson

Gov. Walker and Foxconn officials spoke to a cheering crowd Tuesday as they released more details of Foxconn’s plans to bring hundreds of jobs to downtown Milwaukee. 

Foxconn has agreed to purchase a 132,000 square foot building on E. Wisconsin Avenue from Northwestern Mutual. The Taiwanese electronics giant says it will locate a regional headquarters there.

Foxconn plans to locate a headquarters in downtown Milwaukee that could result in hundreds of jobs.  The operation would supplement the huge LCD screen manufacturing plant that the Taiwanese electronics giant plans to build in Racine County. 

Foxconn says it will formally announce details on Tuesday -- however, Northwestern Mutual Life has confirmed that Foxconn has agreed to purchase a 132,000 square foot building from the company.  WUWM's Marti Mikkelson asked Journal Sentinel Reporter Tom Daykin how this all came about.

HELAINE HICKSON

Foxconn is developing a world-class advanced display manufacturing campus in Racine County that is set to be Wisconsin's largest economic development project in history. We discuss the impact on the region and on area universities with Mark Mone, Chancellor of UW-Milwaukee, Tim Sheehy, President of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce and John Mielke, Director of Strategic Communications at UW-Parkside.

Marti Mikkelson

Plans are beginning to take shape for Foxconn in Racine County. The Department of Transportation recently held an open house to answer questions about road construction in order to make way for the Taiwanese firm’s huge LCD screen factory. One piece of the puzzle yet to fall into place is how to get many potential workers to the jobs.

Last week, dozens of people packed into a couple of rooms at the Mount Pleasant Village Hall to look over road construction plans. The DOT is making changes along I-94, while also improving access roads around Foxconn's manufacturing campus.

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