GRANDVILLE, MI – A family business in Grandville plans to at least double its manufacturing capacity by next summer with a major building expansion.
Harbor Foam, 2950 Prairie St. SW, has broken ground on a nearly 71,000 square foot expansion of its current building.
“We are seeing growth and anticipate that we will not be able to accommodate that growth going forward,” said John Kuperus, facilities manager at Harbor Foam. “We’re working at full capacity, we just can’t make enough foam.”
The company produces molded foam for packaging, construction foam for roofing and insulation, mobile homes and geofoam, which is used as frost protection and soil replacement in road construction, retaining walls and bridges.
Harbor Foam currently employs around 40 people. After the expansion, the company plans to hire another 10 employees.
“We’ll be able to better accommodate our current employees, but we’re looking for more computerized machines, so we’re looking for maybe 10 or so skilled workers,” said Laura Kuperus, CEO of Harbor Foam and wife of Johannes Kuperus.
Laura Kuperus said the biggest area of growth for the company is its geofoam.
“There’s a lot of growth in road construction,” she said. “Where the ground might not be suitable for a stable road, they can excavate that unstable ground and put in a whole system of foam and gravel. It also maintains the longevity of the bridge when building bridges.”
Once the expansion is complete, the Kuperus family hopes to more than double the company’s production capacity.
The 70,853 sq ft expansion will be attached to the existing 221,469 sq ft building on Prairie Street SW. Plans for the expansion were approved by Grandville’s planning commission earlier this year. The expansion includes the addition of 54 parking spaces.
In the expanded area, 3,000 square feet will be office space, 28,814 square feet will be manufacturing space, and the remaining 39,039 square feet will be warehouse space.
According to the Grandville Planning Commission, Harbor Foam currently produces 15 million pounds of expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam per year. Once the expansion is complete they are estimated to be able to produce up to 45 million pounds of foam per year.
“We look forward to opportunities for our employees,” said Laura Kuperus. “We are a family business and it is exciting to grow. Hopefully we will enrich the community.”
She said while they have had to temporarily suspend this service during COVID-19, Harbor Foam also hopes to reopen its foam recycling capabilities to the community. The company accepts any white EPS foam commonly used for packaging as long as it is tape-free.
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