PITTSFIELD, Maine - On Monday, December 8, the Pittsfield planning board granted permission to Cianbro Corporation to use the former San Antonio Shoe facility for a training, education and development center. The move is among the first steps in Cianbro's plan to centralize the company's wide-spread, multi-million dollar training efforts in Northern New England within a single facility.
Cianbro hopes to begin renovations and modifications at the SAS building sometime in 2009. The timetable depends upon town approval of multiple development phases. Also, economic and budgetary considerations will influence Cianbro's schedule.
Cianbro Corporation President Andi Vigue says the company chose the SAS facility for development because it came at a fair price, and because it is located in Pittsfield where the construction firm was founded.
"One of the subjects our Team Members will learn at the new facility will be the history of Cianbro, how the company began, and exactly what the firm has become," says Vigue. "Cianbro is employee-owned, and it seems fitting that they should come here to Pittsfield for training and orientation, in the town where it all started."
Once the facility is fully operational, it will house classrooms, lab space, and offices. An auditorium is in the plans for addressing large groups of Team Members. The facility will also contain a dining commons. A warehouse will be on site to shelter both educational materials and construction supplies. Vigue says there is more space at the facility than the company needs at the moment, but the additional room will give Cianbro the opportunity to grow.
In recent years, Cianbro has spent millions of dollars training welders, pipe fitters, crane operators and other crafts people throughout the state. The new facility will handle all of the company's trainees within Northern New England. The skills that'll be taught range from welding, electrical work and other hands on crafts to management skills such as conflict resolution and personnel organization.
Vigue says the new facility won't handle 100 percent of the company's trainees, but the majority will come through Pittsfield.
"It'll be our central hub for training and development," he says. "And it'll improve our delivery and cost-efficiency."