Ford hires Detroit construction firm Walbridge as general contractor on Tennessee project

Jordyn Grzelewski
The Detroit News

Ford Motor Co. has selected Detroit-based construction firm Walbridge as the general contractor for the $5.6 billion electric-vehicle assembly, battery manufacturing and supplier campus the Dearborn automaker is building in Tennessee with joint-venture partner SK Innovation.

"As we prepare for construction of Blue Oval City, Ford is working with Walbridge as the general or lead contractor for this project," the company said Friday in a statement to The Detroit News. 

Walbridge's role in the project came to light after the companies together hosted a subcontractor event in Tennessee this week. In a statement, Ford said the firms will host "several" subcontractor events in the Memphis area "to provide an overview of the construction opportunities at the site."

"These events will help ensure that Tennesseans and a diverse local workforce will be part of creating a new era of advanced manufacturing for this country."

In September, Ford announced what it described as its single-largest manufacturing investment in history. It, along with SK Innovation, are investing $11.4 billion to build EV and battery manufacturing campuses in Tennessee and Kentucky. 

The site in rural west Tennessee, in the small town of Stanton outside of Memphis, has been dubbed Blue Oval City. The campus will employ nearly 6,000 people and support production of the next generation of electric F-Series pickup trucks as well as electric vehicle batteries.

In October, the Tennessee General Assembly approved $884 million in incentives for the project. Construction there is slated to start later this year, with production slated to launch in 2025.

The lead contractor for the $5.8 billion project to build twin battery plants in central Kentucky has not yet been announced.

jgrzelewski@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @JGrzelewski