GLENDALE, AZ — The manufacturing arm of U-Haul International opened its new operations plant this week with team members reporting to a sprawling 114,000-square-foot facility with striking technological advances and a myriad of employee enhancements.
Glendale Manufacturing Company at 6112 N. 56th Ave. will satisfy and expand upon the steel fabrication, welding, powder coating and other operations that have been fulfilled at AMFORM (American Fabricators of Raw Materials) since 1994. AMFORM, located just two miles away at 4650 W. Pasadena in Glendale, will close in the coming weeks.
AMERCO, the parent company of U-Haul, acquired the 28-acre site (19 acres paved) on N. 56th Avenue near Bethany Home Road in June 2015 from American Park 'n Swap, Inc.
"There are so many reasons that justify having this facility, but the main reason is for our team members," plant president Cedric Moore said. "This plant will greatly improve efficiency and employee satisfaction by creating a better working environment, which in turn will improve customer satisfaction with our products and services."
Glendale Manufacturing Company has twice the interior space and nearly six times the acreage of AMFORM, but the real benefits come from the technology on display. Two Salvagnini L3 Fiber Lasers are the showpieces of a computerized laser-cutting and tiered Salvagnini MV pallet storage system that will provide a higher quality cut while expediting the process from the time raw materials arrive until finished industrial components are shipped.
Six robotic units will handle much of the welding workload while manual welding areas will service the more delicate assignments. Glendale Manufacturing Company will also boast a state-of-the-art automated line powder coating system, which includes a Pangborn in-line sandblast machine, Gema Magic powder booth and an oven curing room. This equipment will increase efficiency, create a safer environment for team members and eliminate the need for outsourcing.
The plant will manufacture various truck and trailer components, utility and appliance dollies, awnings, key-drop boxes, carriages and housings, tools, U-Haul display signage and other components and special projects.
Team member upgrades at the new plant include: a computer training room; a large lunchroom with all the amenities; a wellness center; spacious men's and women's locker rooms; secure gated parking with 98 covered spaces; and a comfortable 82-degree warehouse with four huge cooling units.
Glendale Manufacturing Company is budgeted to employ 199 team members: 118 full-time and 81 moonlighters. Numbers may increase during peak seasons.
"We're headed toward a more advanced technological state as a manufacturing company and as an industry leader creating jobs in Arizona," Moore said. "What we want is to show our technological advances in manufacturing to younger generations, attract them to U-Haul and let them grow up with a great company."
U-Haul corporate headquarters have been located in Phoenix since 1967. The U-Haul Technical Center is stationed in Tempe.