Micron picks Syracuse suburb for huge computer chip plant that would bring up to 9,000 jobs

Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Source: syracuse.com

Micron Technology plans to spend up to $100 billion building a mega-complex of computer chip plants in Syracuse’s northern suburbs in what would be the largest single private investment in New York history.

Micron plans to announce details today about the project, which would create up to 9,000 jobs over the next 20 years at the White Pine Commerce Park in Clay, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer and Gov. Kathy Hochul told syracuse.com | The Post-Standard.

The project is expected to bring an additional 40,000 supply-chain and construction jobs to the Syracuse area and New York state.

“This is incredible and transformative news for Central New York and for the entire U.S. economy,” said Schumer, D-N.Y. “It’s going to make Central New York one of the centers of high-end chip manufacturing, not just in the United States but in the world.”

Micron would build up to four separate semiconductor fabrication plants in phases at the 1,300-acre site off Route 31, Micron President and CEO Sanjay Mehrotra told syracuse.com | The Post-Standard.

The first project would employ 3,000 people in one $20 billion “mega-fab” that would begin production in the latter half of the decade, Mehrotra said. Site preparation would begin next year, with construction starting in 2024.

The fabs, or foundries, are plants where silicon wafers are turned into integrated circuits, the tiny chips that power personal computers, cell phones and other electronic devices.

Micron said the local employees would be paid an average salary of more than $100,000 per year.

The company’s plans call for building a massive 7.2 million-square-foot complex that will include the nation’s largest clean-room space. The clean-room facilities alone would cover about 2.4 million square feet, about the size of 40 football fields.

“It’s stunning in its scale,” Hochul said in an interview. “The impact is going to be felt for generations. The numbers are staggering. As the first Upstate governor in 100 years, I’ve seen the rise, I’ve seen the fall. Now I’ve been around long enough to see Upstate rise again, and this is going to be the catalyst.”

Hochul said the project would boost the economy across Upstate New York over the next two decades, expanding a corridor focused on semiconductor manufacturing from Albany through Utica and Syracuse.

The news is a huge win for the Syracuse area and New York, which competed with at least four other states including Texas to land the Micron plant. New York offered state and local incentives worth at least $6 billion over 20 years, the officials said.

The deal connects Onondaga County to one of the world’s biggest producers of memory chips. Micron, based in Boise, Idaho, employs more than 44,000 people worldwide and recorded revenue of $30.7 billion in its last fiscal year.

Micron’s investment would tie for the largest by any chip manufacturer since Congress passed the Chips and Science Act that provides $52 billion in incentives for companies to make more components in the United States.

Intel plans to invest up to $100 billion to build eight chip fabs on 2,000 acres outside Columbus, Ohio. The company broke ground last month on the first two plants on 1,000 acres.

Mehrotra said the investment in Central New York would also be the largest in Micron’s history, equipping it to build high-end memory chips for a market that is expected to double in the years ahead.

Schumer, Hochul and Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon said they formed a bipartisan team that worked for almost two years trying to lure Micron to Central New York with a package of incentives and a relentless effort to showcase the region’s assets.

“We had at least a weekly meeting,” McMahon said of the team that worked with Micron. “We basically lived together the last 90 days. It was the greatest site-attraction team ever assembled.”

Schumer, the Senate majority leader, said he spoke with Mehrotra more than 50 times over the past two years about the federal incentives and why the White Pine site would be ideal for the company.

“He was very eager for the U.S. to pass the Chips Act,” Schumer said. “And every time we spoke, I told him: I want you to look at Central New York.”

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