For the second time since late February, the federal government has made a significant commitment to growing Michigan’s leadership position in all things automotive. The Obama administration’s Investing in Manufacturing Communities Program, announced last Wednesday, gives preference in funding by 11 U.S. departments and agencies to Advance Michigan, the automotive technologies-based consortium of southeast and central Michigan.
The collaboration is one of a dozen nationwide that will compete for $1.3 billion in federal manufacturing, economic development and research funds. Advance Michigan extends from Pt. Huron on the north, west to Lansing and the Ohio border on the south, includes Detroit, Ann Arbor, Pontiac and Flint among it 47 communities and 13 counties.
“This good news reflects Michigan’s leadership position in automotive and the strength of our state’s innovative automotive strategy to leverage this leadership for the next era of the industry’s growth,” said Michael Finney, MEDC President and CEO. “Automotive technologies are changing rapidly and federal funds will help us accelerate this transformation and enhance Michigan’s standing as the nation’s automotive capital.”
The 13 Advance Michigan counties share industrial supply chains, infrastructure and trade routes as part of a natural economic and labor market. More than half of the state’s population (5.6 million people) live in the region, and 53 percent (approximately $36 billion) of the state’s manufacturing industry occurs in the designated area. The IMCP designation will enable Advance Michigan to focus on strengthening key technologies and supply chains related to automotive efficiency and safety.
The region’s high concentration of automotive R&D facilities and annual investment – more than all other states combined – along with Michigan’s highly skilled workforce, world-class universities and laboratories and manufacturing ecosystem position Advance Michigan to foster innovations that span across a number of sectors including aerospace and defense, energy and medical devices.
The February announcement noted the state’s automotive assets will be the base a new $148 million manufacturing institute based in southeast Michigan. The American Lightweight Materials Manufacturing Innovation Institute is a collaboration of universities, businesses and technology organizations that is projected to create 10,000 new manufacturing jobs in Michigan and Ohio. The federal investment of $70 million will be matched by $78 million from the Institute’s university, business and organization partners, including $10 million from the MEDC.
For more on the MEDC and its initiatives, visit MichiganBusiness.org. For Michigan travel news, updates and information, visit michigan.org. Michigan residents interested in seeking employment with any of Michigan’s growing companies should check mitalent.org, where more than 76,000 jobs are currently available in a variety of industries.