Surveying the work site are (from left) Kronotex Director of Laminate Flooring Sales Sam Green, President Norman Voss and Project Engineer Bob Jordan.

With continued success and growth in the U.S. market, Kronotex USA is responding to product demand by breaking ground on its first U.S.-based manufacturing facility at the 1,630-acre South Carolina Advanced Technology Park in Barnwell County, S.C. Construction will proceed in several phases.

Phase one construction will include a 360,000-square-foot building to house laminating and floor plank profiling lines capable of producing 200 million square feet of laminate flooring annually. Production is anticipated to start by the first quarter of 2005.

Phase two will include construction of a medium-density fiberboard (MDF)/high-density fiberboard (HDF) core plant. Additional phases include more laminating and flooring lines and the rest of the facility.

Kronotex expects to employ at least 70 by late 2005. This number is expected to grow annually, with the final employment to reach 140 by the end of phase two, with an investment of about $135 million.