Japanese automaker Nissan’s North American division is expected to move quickly to select a construction manager to expand and re-tool its Smyrna, Tenn., manufacturing complex on the heels of a Jan. 28 announcement that it will receive a $1.4 billion U.S. Dept. of Energy loan to manufacture the LEAF, a zero-emission, all-electric vehicle. A contractor member of the Associated General Contractors of Tennessee says proposals were “accepted and fully vetted” by Nissan long before the closure of the loan agreement and that the Yokohama-based auto manufacturer is “ready to roll” with construction. Nissan plans to build a 1.3-million-sq-ft facility at
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.