North Star facility expansion boosts production


A ceremony at North Star BlueScope Steel in Delta, Ohio, has marked the plant's US$700 million facility expansion. 

The expansion has created more than 100 new jobs and will increase annual hot rolled coil production by 850,000 metric tonnes.

“This was a difficult build because of the pandemic,” said Patrick Finan, BlueScope’s Chief Executive Hot Rolled Products North America, “but we were still able to complete the project.  Next month, we’ll be making the first slab off the new caster, which is part of the expansion.”

“We continued to run throughout the build,” said North Star’s President Doug Lange. “It took a tremendous amount of coordination to build a steel mill in the middle of another steel mill.”  He noted that the new building wouldn’t have been possible without help from the State of Ohio, Fulton County, the Fulton County Economic Development Corporation, Jobs Ohio, the local community and North Star’s team members.

Representing the State of Ohio, Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted said, “When you make a $700 million investment, that’s no small deal; that’s a big deal. You can’t just pick up a steel mill and move it if things don’t go right. And so, the reassurances from the State of Ohio and local economic development officials, particularly regarding energy, were very important to North Star’s decision. We appreciate the collaboration between the company and our state officials to make sure we could sort out all those issues.

“We value great companies making great investments, creating great jobs and improving quality of life in communities within Ohio. North Star is the supply chain for many things that get built throughout the Midwest. This project is important in helping many other businesses get materials that they rely on for success.”

To commemorate the expansion, Mark Vassella, BlueScope’s CEO and Managing Director, presented a large, framed photo of the mini-mill. He also announced that the North Star team earned the CEO’s Health and Safety Excellence Award for 2021.