Half of the buildings that make up what had long been the Alcoa Technical Center in Upper Burrell could become home to new businesses.
Arconic Corp. is working with JLL, a commercial real estate firm, to place four of the seven buildings it owns at what is now the Arconic Technology Center on the market, said Shawn Sullivan, the center’s managing director.
Marketing materials are being finalized, Arconic spokeswoman Tracie Gliozzi said.
The center off Route 780 covers between 1,800 and 1,900 acres, with about 200 acres fenced. Arconic has consolidated its operations into three of its seven buildings, including Building A, the first building Alcoa completed there in 1964.
Alcoa maintains a presence at the campus, owning one building.
After peaking at about 1,200 employees in the late 1990s and early 2000s, Arconic staff at the center now numbers between 120 and 125, Sullivan said adding Arconic selected the buildings it is keeping because of their installed equipment and because they provide room for growth.
The property became the Arconic Technology Center in 2016 after Alcoa separated its aluminum commodity business from its aerospace, automotive, industrial, packaging and architectural products business, which became Arconic Inc.
Arconic Inc. split into two businesses in 2020: Howmet Aerospace, focused on engineered products, and Arconic Corp., focused on rolled aluminum products, extrusions and building and construction solutions.
Howmet has no presence at the Upper Burrell center.
Sullivan said the buildings that will be for sale consist of a mix of office, laboratory and high-bay space. He said the remote location could be a problem in attracting buyers, as the center does not have direct highway access.
The location has not been an impediment for the nearby Westmoreland Business & Research Park, built on what once had been Alcoa property. It is home to 21 companies with more than 2,580 workers, with 38 of its 39 parcels on about 270 acres sold, according to the Westmoreland County Industrial Development Corp.
The roads in the area, routes 380 and 780, are able to handle the traffic at the park, which was never marketed for distribution purposes but for general manufacturing instead, said Jason Rigone, executive director of the IDC.
Rigone said Arconic has not approached the IDC for assistance with its sale.
“We are prepared to support Arconic in getting those buildings marketed, reutilized and the site redeveloped,” Rigone said. “They’re the driver on that as the property owner.”
Arconic is a major landholder in Upper Burrell, and the center is very important to the township, Supervisor Ross Walker III said. Fewer people working there contributed to an increase in the township’s property tax rate, he said.
Walker said the township would welcome the sale of the buildings and having new businesses move in.
“There’s lots of opportunity there,” he said. “It’s exciting to think about. I’ve watched this township grow from even before I moved out here.”