99 years after GM plant opened, demolition begins at former site

99 years after GM plant opened, demolition begins at former site
Courtesy of Commercial Development Co.

Commercial Development Co. Inc. officials said crews started demolishing the Janesville Assembly Plant site Wednesday.

According to a news release, nearly 4.8 million square feet at the site will be razed, which is expected to between a year and 18 months. The size is the equivalent of 106 football fields, CDC said.

CDC said the site offers a “significant opportunity for new development and new jobs” in the area, and said it has already received “significant interest in the site from regional and global prospective occupants.”

The Janesville Assembly Plant opened its doors on May 1, 1919, and was the oldest operating GM plant when it was idled in December 2008. More than a year later, the plant ceased all production. At its peak in 1970, it employed about 7,000 people.

CDC acquired the plant in December.

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