GM is transitioning its Oshawa vehicle assembly plant in Ontario into a parts manufacturing plant and a test track for autonomous and advanced technology vehicles.
The legacy automaker announced during November 2018 that it was shuttering the 100-year old vehicle plant. Since then the company hasn’t shared much, but now it’s decided to transition the factory into something else instead of an assembly plant.
The company is investing $170 million into restructuring the factory from a vehicle assembly into one focused on “stamping, related sub-assembly, and other miscellaneous activities for GM and other auto industry customers,” reads the company’s press release.
GM is converting the southern section of the plant into a track to test autonomous and advanced technology vehicles. This is meant to support GM Canada’s Canadian Technical Centres, specifically the ones in Markham and Oshawa. The Markham centre is currently focusing on self-driving technologies, and Oshawa is working on chassis and body subsystems as well as to enhance GM’s expertise in alternative fuels, specialty vehicles, cold weather development, according to GMAutority.
The track will take up 55-acres of land and include two straight sections that are 365 metres (1,200-feet) long that are joined by a banked curve on each end to allow continuing driving safely at high speeds.
The new GM campus is planned to employee 300 people with the ability for it to expand in the following years.
The company also states that it’s offering “special relocations to Oshawa employees for jobs at some of its other Ontario operations” in the press release.
For employees who are close to retirement age, the company is offering enhanced retirement packages.