Fences surrounding Buick City's 235-acres remind neighbors of what used to be there. Come December, the fences will start come down, a new plant will rise and neighbors hope theyâ??ll be able to cash in on the trickle-down effect.
If want a Buick City history lesson, look no further then the bar across the street.
"It was lovely back in the day,â?? says Margaret Shipp, a GM retiree.
â??Business was booming then and bam now all of a sudden, look, we ain't (sic) got nothing over there,â?? says Roger Pruett, who worked at Buick City.
General Motors retirees now passing the time at J's bar, watching the weeds grow and garbage fill up the site of their former employer.
â??It was packed all the time and now look at it,â?? says Pruett.
Come next year, workers will return to the site---this time to build pipes.
â??Create something, Flint's not dead,â?? says Shipp.
â??We're very proud to announce that American pipe will be made in Flint,â?? says Flint mayor Dayne Walling at press conference Wednesday.
The piping made in Flint will supply the $84-million Karegnondi pipeline project---bringing water from Lake Huron to Genesee County.
"With the location here in Flint we feel we have opened up some additional markets especially to the eastern seaboard and the northeast,â?? says Patrick Hook, Vice President of Operations at American Cast Iron Pipe Co.
â??Itâ??s a sign on hope. There's economic opportunity again on the Buick City site. We need to continue to find additional companies,â?? says Walling. â??We want to fill that entire corridor.â??
â??This the best thing that could happen to this city because we need more opportunitists (sic) coming into this city so we could have more jobs,â?? says Shipp.
About 60 workers will work on one shift at the plant to start. Ground breaking is slated for this December.