As General Motors prepares to idle five North American factories by the end of the year, the Detroit automaker is also investing in its plants that build highly profitable vehicles. Today, General Motors announced it will invest $36 million into its Lansing Delta Township Plant. The company builds the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave there, and crossovers are hot right now. The latest investment is just a drop in the bucket compared to the $600 million the automaker has poured into the facility since 2009.
“We are proud of the hard work and commitment of the entire Lansing team and the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave are important products in our growing crossover portfolio,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra during a visit to the plant to meet with employees and community leaders. “This investment will allow us to prepare the plant for future crossover production.”
News of GM’s investment comes as the automaker contuse to fight critics of its restructuring program. GM wants to save $6 billion by 2020 and is attempting to do so by laying off thousands of workers, discontinuing several models such as the Chevrolet Impala and Buick LaCrosse, and idling those five factories.
One of GM’s most prominent critics since the announcement has been the United Auto Workers Union and Unifor, the Canadian workers union. Both have been vocal since GM announced its plan; however, Unifor has taken the fight to the next level with an aggressive media campaign that has caught the eye of GM’s legal team.
However, for as distraught as workers are, GM said it has 2,700 job opportunities at other production facilities for the 2,800 hourly employees that would be affected by the company’s idling of the five plants. Nearly 1,000 have decided to transfer. GM is also adding 1,000 new jobs to build the new 2020 Silverado and GMC Sierra heavy-duty pickups.