Industries Energy/Green

Areva plans $26.3 million investment in Virginia facilities

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The nuclear energy company Areva Inc. plans to invest $26.3 million in its operations in Lynchburg and Campbell County.

The company is designating its facilities there as its Operational Center of Excellence for Nuclear Products and Services in North America.

The investments include highly advanced machinery and equipment to enhance research and development (R&D) capabilities and to improve competitiveness in advanced manufacturing.

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Lynchburg and Campbell County to secure the project for Virginia. Gov. Bob McDonnell approved a $350,000 performance-based grant from the Virginia Investment Partnership program, an incentive available to existing Virginia companies.

In addition, the company will receive grants of  $132,000 from Campbell County, and $218,000 from the city of Lynchburg.

Areva will add $10.9 million in machinery and tools in Lynchburg during the next three years, and $6.9 million of investments in the Areva Solutions Complex in Campbell County.

The company currently supports the more than 100 nuclear reactors in North America through maintenance, upgrades, modernizations, lifetime extensions and reactor completion.

Company officials said that by diversifying its technical services and product offerings, it will be better able to compete in a shifting nuclear energy market.

Areva employs more than 1,800 workers in Central Virginia.

In a statement, McDonnell said “an investment of this magnitude secures the long-term viability of the plants as research & development capabilities and advanced manufacturing are significantly enhanced.”

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