More Good News: Starcraft Reopens in Topeka
Starcraft RV, a division of Jayco Inc., today (March 3) announced that it will reopen its Topeka, Ind., manufacturing facilities beginning in May.
The Starcraft RV plant had been closed in January 2009 as part of the Jayco corporate efforts to trim costs and reduce production capacity as a result of recessionary economic pressures, according to a news release.
The company said it will initially move production of Starcraft Autumn Ridge travel trailers from its Middlebury, Ind., complex and the move will create 50 jobs at the Topeka facility later this year. Over time, company officials said they anticipate that production of most, if not all, of Starcraft RV product lines will be relocated back to the Topeka plants.
In making the announcement, Jim Jacobs, general manager of Starcraft RV, said, “When we consolidated operations into the Middlebury campus last year, we stated that our goal was to reinstate the Topeka operations as soon as market conditions would allow us to do so. Now that our business has begun to recover from the recent recession cycle, we believe the timing is right to accelerate these activities.”
Fewer than 20 workers were transferred to Middlebury, where they continued to make Starcraft products, Sid Johnson, Jayco’s director of marketing, told the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette. Some will transfer back to Topeka, and 50 workers will hired in addition, Johnson said.
Jayco hopes eventually to employ 200 to 250 at the Topeka plant, but that depends on how well the RV market recovers, Johnson said.