NGK Groundbreaking

By: Will Jones Email
By: Will Jones Email

A company in northern Kanawha County is expanding.

NGK Spark Plugs is expanding its facilities in Sissonville, and the expansion might be a spark for change.

It's a stake in the land that represents growth and job security.

“If they keep expanding out here, that's more security for us,” said Tim Slack, an employee at the company. “We know we have a place to work and that's good news for us nowadays out here the way the economy is.”

NGK Spark Plug plans to expand just after twelve years in Sissonville, breaking ground on Saturday on a new facility that will open up by the summer of 2008.

“It's substantial business and economic growth that allows families to move out this way,” said Paul Ballard, an employee.

It’s also good news for the state. NGK searched nationwide for the perfect location for its new spark plug facility, and West Virginia made it to the top of the list. It's an honor that some say is well deserved.

“I think sometimes in West Virginia, we are our own worst critics,” said Senator Jay Rockefeller. “We are much better than we give ourselves credit for. I think my role in West Virginia is just to make sure West Virginians know how good we really are.”

It’s an expansion that will spark changes in the state's economy and in the minds of people who call West Virginia home.

NGK Spark Plugs makes oxygen sensors for several major automakers, including Honda and Ford.

There's no word yet on how many jobs the new facility will bring. The company currently employs about 220 people in West Virginia.

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