In 1919, JP Cullen was awarded the project to build the original plant for General Motor’s predecessor, Samson Tractor Factory. Not long after, the plant was turned into a General Motors plant that was producing around 150 tractors per day. In 1923, Chevrolet cars were being produced and expansions began taking place. As the plant grew over the next 90 years, JP Cullen was involved with every major expansion. Within that time frame, over 3,000,000 square feet of renovations had taken place.
Flash forward to today, JP Cullen is the Construction Manager for Blackhawk Community Credit Union’s Legacy Center and their new corporate headquarters. How does this all relate? The Legacy Center is being built to tell the story of General Motors by provoking memories, conversation, and providing a place for people to have conversations about the importance of the plant in Janesville. The remodeling is taking place within the former Chase Bank building, but that’s not all. JP Cullen was involved in the original construction of this long-standing structure that was first occupied by Old National Bank in 1913.
Within this building, JP Cullen has also had involvement on numerous renovations including a new facade in 1977. The new Legacy Center isn’t meant to get rid of historical elements, but instead return the building to its original form. Starting this year, crews will begin to remove the facade and create a modern, yet historical building. According to the Gazette Xtra, “Multiple GM retirees have volunteered to staff the center and guide people through the displays of items Blackhawk salvaged from the plant during its recent demolition.” The plan is to have the Legacy Center up and running by 2021.
For updates and more information, check out Blackhawk Community Credit Union’s website.