Holcim’s Mason City plant turns 100

Holcim’s Mason City plant turns 100
Published: 06 May 2008

The Holcim Inc. cement plant in Mason City is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year.

“For 100 years, Holcim’s Mason City plant has been a major cement producer, dedicated to our employees and the well being of the community,” said Eliseo Robles, plant manager. “We are honored to be a successful and responsible member of the North Iowa family.”

To celebrate 100 years the public is invited to an open house with guided bus tours, historical displays and refreshments from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 10, at the plant at 1840 N. Federal Ave.

Holcim is also celebrating by being a major sponsor of the North Iowa Band Festival this year.

The plant began operations in 1908 as Northwestern States Portland Cement Co. Under the leadership of multiple generations of the MacNider family, the plant pioneered the establishment of profit-sharing for workers and group hospitalization benefits, according to a news release.

In 1990 the plant was purchased by Holcim Ltd, and continued production under the name Holnam before being renamed Holcim (US) Inc. in 2001. Over the years Holcim has seen ongoing modernizations, including $5.5 million being reinvested into it this year, said Perry Buffington, human resource manager.

Today the plant has 165 employees and contributes more than $60 million to the Iowa economy, Buffington said.

Around 1Mt of various types of cement are produced at the plant and marketed in Iowa and the surrounding states.

Some projects Holcim’s cement will be used for include 5,000t for the reconstruction of the I-35W bridge in Minneapolis, renovations of Jack Trice Stadium at Iowa State University, windmill construction in Pomeroy and the  addition to the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics in Iowa City.

Past projects include the Avenue of the Saints and Sec Taylor Stadium and Wells Fargo Arena, both in Des Moines.