ROCKBRIDGE, Va. — Modine Mfg. Co. officially marked the launch of its new production facility in Rockbridge, Virginia, with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The newly repurposed plant, previously a warehouse, will manufacture cooling solutions under the Airedale by Modine brand to capture opportunities in the growing data center industry. The ribbon-cutting ceremony was attended by Modine employees and local government officials, including Rep. Ben Cline (VA-06), Lexington Mayor Frank Friedman, and representatives from the Rockbridge County Board of Supervisors and the Virginia Economic Development Partnership.
Neil Brinker, Modine president and CEO; Eric McGinnis, president of Modine Climate Solutions; and Rockbridge plant manager, Thomas Johnson hosted guests on a tour of the new facility and explained why it is ideally located to serve the U.S. data center market. Virginia is the largest data center market in the world, and Northern Virginia is home to more than 20% of all known hyperscale data centers worldwide.
“The demand for data is growing exponentially,” said Brinker, “and the Rockbridge plant positions Modine to offer a full range of cooling solutions to serve North American customers in the growing data center market. The products we manufacture here are one way Modine is engineering a cleaner, healthier world.”
“Modine has a proud history in Virginia,” said McGinnis. “I’m delighted to open a new chapter on that with the official opening of the Rockbridge manufacturing plant. The support we’ve received from the local area has been instrumental in getting to this point, and we’re starting to see the benefits now in terms of jobs and economic growth. Virginia is at the heart of the global data center market, so there is no better place to be to serve our clients.”
Brinker thanked the government agencies for their support, which included a $194,000 grant from Virginia’s Opportunity Fund. Grant funds supported recruitment efforts that enabled the plant to exceed its initial target of creating 60 new full-time roles. Brinker said Modine expects to have more roles to fill in the next 12 months as the facility completes ongoing work to launch an on-site test facility.
Dave Gifford, associate vice president of Corscale cut the ribbon and declared the plant open. The first six chillers manufactured at the new plant were recently delivered to Corscale’s Gainesville Crossing data campus following extensive testing at the Airedale headquarters in the U.K.