JENKINS TWP. — Isuzu Commercial Truck of America, Inc. will open a training and parts distribution center early this summer in Jenkins Township.
The new facility will be opened in CenterPoint Commerce & Trade Park East. The lease is for an entire 134,442-square-foot building, which was recently developed on speculation by Mericle Commercial Real Estate Services. The project marks the first time Isuzu has combined a training center, to be named Isuzu Truck University, and a modern parts distribution center under one roof.
Inside, about 97,000 square feet will be used for parts distribution and 30,000 square feet will be used for technical training. The remainder will be used as office space.
Jim Cummings, vice president of marketing for Mericle Commercial Real Estate Services in Wilkes-Barre, said the building was already constructed as part of Mericle’s ReadyToGo program.
The program constructs buildings on properties owned by Mericle and makes them available for business looking to move to Northeastern Pennsylvania.
“A flex building was constructed on a ReadyToGo site and we finished it a year ago,” Cummings said. “When Isuzu came in saying they needed a building, we had a building that was well-suited to meet their needs. The building had been finished and we were marketing it as a newly constructed flex building.”
A flex building, according to Cummings, is designed to be flexible so any company ranging from factories to medical to manufacturing can move into the facility.
Mericle is currently working on the interior of the building to fit the needs of Isuzu, which will move into the building in the early summer months.
The exact move-in date is not yet known.
The new training facility will complement Isuzu’s existing training center in Garden Grove, California.
Isuzu Truck University will serve Isuzu dealerships in the eastern United States from Maine to Virginia and west to Ohio. Certified Isuzu technicians will come to the facility for advanced training on internal mechanical components and operations of diesel and gas engines.
The program lasts one week and attendees will stay in local hotels.
Gerard Champi, president of the Greater Pittston Chamber of Commerce, said he’s excited about the opportunities the training program will bring to the Pittston area.
“I think the economic engine from a development standpoint, what you hope to have happen, is the folks will land the employment, begin to look for housing, buy houses and they have to educate their children,” he said. “The employees will begin families and it’s the circle of what economic development was built on in this country.”
Travis Kellar contributed to this report. Reach Jimmy Fisher at 570-704-3972 or on Twitter @SD_JimmyFisher.