Hot on the heels of Tuesday’s announcement of a new steel mill from U.S. Steel, Nucor Corp. revealed January 12 it would build its own new sheet metal plant in West Virginia. The $2.7 billion mill will employ 800 people and produce about 3 million tons of steel when it becomes operational in 2024, according to a company release.
The plant will be located on the Ohio River in West Virginia’s Mason County and will supply sheet metal for automotive and construction. Nucor plans for the new mill to feature 84-inch steel, a 76-inch tandem cold mill and two galvanizing lines, one for each market. According to Nucor, the automotive galvanizing line features full inspection capabilities.
Leon Topalian, CEO of Nucor, said in a statement that the new mill would feature “unmatched capabilities.”
“We are pleased to create hundreds of new, high-paying jobs, and position West Virginia as a leader in clean steel production,” he said.
The plans from Nucor are strikingly similar to those of U.S. Steel’s in ways other than the timing of the announcement. U.S. Steel says it will pay $3 billion for its expanded mill, $300 million more than Nucor, and also expects it to produce 3 million tons of steel annually when it, too, begins production two years from now. Both plants aim to produce steel for the automotive and construction end-markets, and both are positioned on major rivers: U.S. Steel’s on the Mississippi, Nucor’s on the Ohio.
“Following a thorough process to determine the right location for our state-of-the-art, greenfield sheet mill, we are thrilled to make this significant investment in West Virginia and enhance our presence in this important region,” said Topalian.
According to West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice’s office, the state has been competing with neighboring states Ohio and Pennsylvania since August 2021 to host the plant. Justice’s office also said the $2.7 billion factory is the largest investment in both Nucor’s and West Virginia’s history.
“This is a landmark announcement in the history of our state,” Justice said in a statement, predicting it would “change lives by bringing hundreds of great-paying jobs to Mason County.”
Nucor Steel West Virginia VP John Farris thanked Justice and other local officials and said Nucor “looks forward to breaking ground” as well as partnering with local educational institutions on workforce development programs.