Steel Dynamics, along with its subsidiaries and partners, will invest $2.5 billion into a new aluminum flat rolled facility and biocarbon plant at the Infinity Megasite, a KCS Premier Certified Site in Columbus, Miss., the company announced Nov. 2 in a release.
According to Steel Dynamics, the planned aluminum flat rolled mill, which, along with the biocarbon plant will be located in the Golden Triangle Industrial Park, is designed to have an annual production capacity of 650,000 metric tons of finished products, serving the sustainable beverage packaging, automotive and common alloy industrial sectors. The product offering, Steel Dynamics says, “will be supported by various value-added finishing lines, including CASH (continuous annealing solutions heat treating) lines, continuous coating, and various slitting and packaging operations.”
According to Steel Dynamics, construction on the rolling mill, which will be built on a 2,000-acre site, is expected to begin in 2023 with completion slated for mid-2025. “The company’s focus on decarbonization will also be applied to this aluminum operation, including plans to use a significant amount of pre- and post-consumer aluminum scrap in its production process, supported by the company’s metals recycling platform, which is the largest nonferrous metals recycler in North America,” Steel Dynamics said.
On Nov. 17, Gov. Tate Reeves signed legislation that finalizes “the largest economic development deal” in Mississippi’s history. A deal that, according to the governor, will lead to the creation of 1,000 jobs with an average salary of $93,000.
In addition to the recycled aluminum flat rolled mill, Steel Dynamics joint venture SDI Biocarbon Solutions, LLC, will be constructing a biocarbon production facility. Construction is expected to begin in 2022 and be completed in late 2023.
According to Steel Dynamics, the Columbus, Miss., location brings numerous advantages, including:
- “Sufficient acreage to allow strategic customers to co-locate on the site, providing a baseload volume opportunity for the aluminum mill, while providing customers with shorter lead times, logistics savings and meaningful working capital savings.
- “Synergies related to the close proximity of the company’s Columbus Flat Roll Steel Division.
- “A talented workforce that is driven by the company’s unique entrepreneurial, performance-based culture.
- “Excellent logistics provided by on-site access to a Class I railroad, proximity to the major U.S. highway systems, and access to the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway.
- “Existing, mature and dependable natural gas, water sources, and access to ample renewable power.”
“We are extremely excited to announce Columbus, Miss., as the location for our new next-generation recycled aluminum flat rolled mill,” said Steel Dynamics Chairman, President and CEO Mark D. Millett. “We are eager to expand our presence in Columbus, and we deeply value the warm welcome and support that we have received from the community, officials, Gov. Reeves, and the State of Mississippi, as well as leaders from the Mississippi Development Authority and local leaders from the Lowndes County Board of Supervisors, the Lowndes County Industry Development Authority, the Lowndes County Port Authority, the Golden Triangle Regional Airport Authority, and the Golden Triangle Development LINK. We thank them for their trust, shared vision, and support for this important strategic investment. We believe the aluminum flat rolled mill itself will create 700 high-paying positions, and that abundant opportunities for indirect job growth of more than 250 positions can be created from our customers and other support service providers, bringing additional meaningful economic growth to the surrounding communities.”
“This is a game changing win for the state of Mississippi,” said Gov. Reeves upon signing House Bill 1, Senate Bill 2001 and Senate Bill 2022, which were passed during a special session on Nov. 2. “This investment from Steel Dynamics will have a generational impact on our community. I’m thankful to all those who helped make this deal happen. The future of our state is bright, and today’s ceremony was further announcement to the world that Mississippi is open for business.”
KCS, via a LinkedIn post, also congratulated Steel Dynamics on the announcement of the company’s $2.5 billion investment.
In early February 2022, Steel Dynamics held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its 1.2-million-square-foot new flat roll steel mill in Sinton, Tex., which is served by Union Pacific (UP) and BNSF. Construction began in 2020, and included the infrastructure needed to connect the facility with UP’s adjacent main line.