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VIDEO: Manufacturer Shows Lehigh Valley is Still Building America’s Skylines

By Colin McEvoy on April 20, 2017

Michelman Steel Enterprises is more than just an excellent example of the many successful manufacturing companies in the Lehigh Valley.

The steel fabricator, which manufactures structural steel for bridges and large building projects across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions, illustrates that Lehigh Valley manufacturers are still building the skyline and infrastructure of the United States.

“It is a testament that, despite the end of the Bethlehem Steel age, we can still make stuff here in the Lehigh Valley,” said John Kingsley, Vice President of Finance for the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC). “… They continue a history and as legacy of the Lehigh Valley, and I like being a part of that.”

Michelman Steel Enterprises was among the featured projects highlighted in a video produced by LVEDC for its 2017 Annual Meeting last month. The video can be seen below:

In the two-minute video, Kingsley and Eric Michelman, the company’s owner and president, discuss how Michelman Steel Enterprises has benefitted from its location in the Lehigh Valley, as well as from assistance from LVEDC’s Finance Department.

The company has been expanding steadily since starting in the Lehigh Valley in 2012, and LVEDC has worked with it since its inception, helping them secure a $1.75 million PIDA loan last year to acquire and renovate a 71,150 square-foot manufacturing facility in Bethlehem.

Michelman said the company has benefitted from the strong workforce pool in the Lehigh Valley, as well as its central location, proximity to markets, and strong quality of life.

“My business philosophy is to earn New York income, but have the Lehigh Valley’s costs,” he said in the video.

Michelman Steel Enterprises makes steel for projects in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. Its new Bethlehem facility will be nearly three times the size of its previous location in Upper Macungie Township.

“Companies like Michelman Steel are not an everyday occurrence,” Kingsley asid. “You’re dealing with an individual who has a great deal of knowledge and a great deal of experience in this industry; a great example of the kind of company we want to grow here.”

High performance manufacturing was identified by Garner Economics as one of the four optimal target sectors of the Lehigh Valley based on the site-specific characteristics of the regional economy. The others included high value business services, life science research and manufacturing, and food and beverage processing.

The video was developed by ASR Media at PBS39, which also prepared featured LVEDC project videos about Guardian Life Insurance and Tyber Medical. Those videos can be found on the LVEDC YouTube Channel.

LVEDC Discusses Lehigh Valley Manufacturing on PBS39’s FOCUS

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    14.2% of Labor Force
    Employed in Professional & Business Services
    Q4 2016

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    $37 Billion

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