Gov. Beshear impressed with construction progress at BlueOval SK plant site

By Quin Welch, Building Kentucky


As the second battery plant begins to take shape and hiring hourly-workers has begun for the 5,000 jobs being created at the two plants, Gov. Andy Beshear today joined BlueOval SK executives to tour BlueOval SK Battery Park in Glendale.

Progress has continued since workers installed the first structural beam for the second plant on June 12; that day alone, they installed 77 pieces.

The Governor also visited the park in December 2022 when Ford and SK On celebrated construction progress at the battery park, where their joint venture – BlueOval SK – has invested $5.8 billion to produce advanced batteries for future Ford and Lincoln electric vehicles, or EVs, slated to start production in 2025.

“It is wonderful to watch Team Kentucky move forward on a project that cemented our status as the EV battery production capital of the United States,” Gov. Beshear said. “We are thankful to everyone at BlueOval SK and the nearly 2,600 construction workers onsite who have made significant construction progress, bringing Ford closer to its target of producing an annual run rate of 2 million electric vehicles globally by the end of 2026.”

“People are the most important part of BlueOval SK,” BlueOval SK Human Resources Director Neva Burke said. “We’re excited to electrify the future and create 5,000 good-paying jobs in Kentucky.” 

Construction at BlueOval SK Battery Park Remains on Schedule
Construction is on schedule at the two massive battery manufacturing facilities that will be capable of collectively producing more than 80 gigawatt hours annually. When completed, BlueOval SK’s two battery plants at the site will each measure approximately 4 million square feet each.

Significant progress has been made at the 2.3-square-mile battery manufacturing campus.

Already, crews have:

  • Moved 6.8 million cubic yards of earth;
  • Placed 257,000 cubic yards of concrete;
  • Erected 44,000 tons of steel, equal to the weight of nearly 200 Statues of Liberty;
  • Installed 2.8 million square feet of roofing, enough to cover 48 football fields; and
  • Installed 535,000 square feet of exterior siding.

In April 2023, Gov. Beshear joined officials from Elizabethtown Community and Technical College (ECTC), BlueOval SK and Ford Motor Co. to officially break ground on the ECTC BlueOval SK Training Center in Glendale.

BlueOval SK Battery Park will train 5,000 new workers at this new training center, located on the 1,500-acre BlueOval SK Battery Park site.

The training center is the only co-branded learning facility within the Kentucky Community College System and represents a $25 million investment by the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

The curriculum within the 42,000-square-foot training facility will support battery knowledge, roles and skills. BlueOval SK will train employees in SK On’s proprietary technical, quality and manufacturing processes in the ECTC BlueOval SK Training Center’s virtual reality labs, industrial maintenance lab, work simulation lab and ergonomics techniques classrooms. ECTC BlueOval SK Training Center is scheduled to be completed in 2024.

More information about employment at BlueOval SK Battery Park can be found here.

The record-setting BlueOval SK project contributes to a rapidly growing EV sector in the commonwealth, which to date includes 21 projects representing $10.9 billion in announced investment and the creation of more than 10,372 full-time jobs for Kentucky residents.

Since the beginning of his administration, Gov. Beshear has announced more than 870 private-sector new-location and expansion projects totaling approximately $26.8 billion in announced investments.

Continued Commitment to the CommunityThroughout the campus construction process, Ford and its construction partners have continued to engage with communities in Kentucky through donations, sponsorships and volunteer efforts, building on Ford’s 109-year commitment to the state.

Ford Motor Co. has provided nearly $40,000 and manpower from its construction partners, Barton Malow Co. and Gray Construction, to the city of Glendale, home to BlueOval SK Battery Park. The team refreshed many of the city’s parks and sidewalks, some of which had not been replaced in more than 100 years.

Ford’s construction partners also installed handicap accessible ramps throughout Glendale and supported various projects locally with United Way of Central Kentucky, Feeding America and Habitat for Humanity throughout Central Kentucky. Ford donated $42,000 to the Glendale Volunteer Fire Department, increasing the department’s budget by more than 50%. Ford also sponsored this year’s Glendale Crossing Festival.

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