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With many union construction projects, success can depend on the early involvement of union members. That’s especially true on projects that are larger or being done by large national corporations, like Amazon. Carpenters working on the new Amazon warehouse in Clay, New York, know that firsthand. Approximately 70 members of Local 277 are working on the $350 million job due, in part, to the efforts of Local 277 Council Representative Mitch Latimer.
When the project was proposed and under review by the county, he began attending public meetings where it was being discussed. It wasn’t long before the developer, Trammell Crow, recognized the Carpenters union might be a better ally than adversary and started conversations with the union, yielding a positive result for local labor.
Latimer continued attending meetings so consistently that some began to think he actually worked for Trammel Crow. The project was approved and now Latimer is taking the lead servicing the job.
“This project has a significant impact, not only on our community, but on our union members,” Latimer said. “Being involved in that local approval process really made a difference, helping to generate a significant amount of man-hours for our carpenters. It’s something that all of us, as union members, could do more of to create more work hours for each other.”
As one of the largest warehouses in the world, the five-story building will provide 3.8 million square feet on more than 16 acres of land. It will include 230,000 square feet of light metal framing and insulated siding panels and 28,000 sheets of drywall interior. It is scheduled to open in the Fall.
General Foreman Jeff Ackerman, a 28-year member from Local 277 said, “Running a job of this magnitude with an aggressive 12- month schedule takes a lot of coordination from owners, project managers, office help, warehouse help, trucking, supply companies, other union trades and most of all our foreman and union brothers and sisters in the field. We have been given a great opportunity to showcase our union skills. I would like to thank our union representatives for working with developers to get this to be a union project.”
Signatory subcontractors on the project include GMAC (concrete), Murnane (concrete foundation walls), and Henderson- Johnson (exterior framing and siding, interior systems and general carpentry).
“This project is a great example of the importance of working as a team along with developers and contractors to have a successful project. We are thankful for our partnership with the developer, Trammell Crow, as well as our signatory contractors, Henderson – Johnson, Murnane Building, and GMAC. Everyone worked together to help this project become a reality right from the beginning,” said Local 277 Team Lead Jim Mason.