Economic Development

GM Pays $5.1M to Acquire Land for Battery Plant

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – General Motors LLC has closed on its purchase of 158 acres along state Route 45 in Lordstown where it intends to build its new $2.3 billion battery plant.

The deal was recorded March 23 at a sale price of $5.1 million, according to the Trumbull County Auditor’s office. The auditor appraised the vacant industrial land, once owned by GM, at $312,300, according to records.

GM owned the property until 2010 as part of its sprawling Lordstown manufacturing complex and jettisoned it to Racer Properties LLC after the automaker’s bankruptcy that year. In 2014, Racer sold the land to NorthPoint Development, based in Kansas City. No sale price was recorded on the auditor’s website regarding that transaction.

At the time, NorthPoint said it intended to build an industrial park to house distribution firms that would serve the auto industry and other ventures, but the project never materialized.

In December, GM and Korea-based LG Chem announced it would create a joint venture and construct a battery manufacturing plant to serve the emerging electric vehicle market. The factory is expected to employ about 1,100. The following month, GM announced that it had selected the NorthPoint site as the location for the plant.

The Business Journal reported in December that the site was a likely candidate for GM’s new battery plant.

A year ago this month, GM shuttered its massive Lordstown assembly plant, eliminating 1,500 jobs there. In November 2019, GM announced that it had reached an agreement with Lordstown Motors Corp. to purchase the plant for $20 million.

The Business Journal first reported in December that GM extended a line of credit worth $40 million to the company so it could purchase and begin retooling the plant to produce an all-electric pickup, the Endurance.

Under the terms of a memorandum agreement with Lordstown Motors, GM has the option to lease 500,000 square feet of real property and 400,000 square feet of land on the east side of the plant, near the selected site of the battery complex. The property includes a corner of a 45-acre parcel that fronts state Route 45 and a parking lot. The lease option expires April 1.

GM also has the option to repurchase the plant and assets according to a second option memorandum signed with Lordstown Motors. Those options expire May 30.

Pictured at top: Diagram of the land where the plant will be built.

Copyright 2020 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.