By Jason Lea, UT Akron BureauFlorence, Kentucky-Firestone Building Products Co. is moving a polyisocyanurate (PIR) foam plant from Covington, Kentucky, to nearby Florence.The firm will replace a 21-m laminator with a 30-m unit, and will invest “north of $10 million” for the project, said Michael Gorey, president of Indianapolis-based Firestone BPC and chief executive officer of parent firm BFS Diversified Products llc, in a telephone interview.Firestone BPS has eight plants dedicated to PIR production, in Kentucky, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, and Wisconsin.The 32 700-m2 Florence site is 20 000 m2 larger than the Covington plant.Gorey said the company is assessing its staff needs at the new plant. All Covington employees are being transferred to Florence; the towns are just 8 km apart.Firestone has not decided the fate of the Covington site. It may be sold or used as a warehouse, Gorey said.James Hoff, vice president of quality, technology, and product development, said neither the state of Kentucky nor Boone County offered any tax incentives or grants for the relocation.PIR foam products are used as roof insulation. They are produced on a moving line and formed by the reaction of MDI (methylene diphenyl diisocyanate) with aromatic polyester polyols, and Firestone uses pentane as the blowing agent for its products. PIR foams have greater fire resistance than conventional rigid urethane foams.”
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