Joey Thorner plays with a miniature digger at the Komatsu Sparwood opening.  Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

Joey Thorner plays with a miniature digger at the Komatsu Sparwood opening. Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

Komatsu celebrates opening of new Sparwood facility

Komatsu employees in Sparwood now reside under one roof, after four of their buildings on Douglas Fir Road were amalgamated into one. The newly renovated Komatsu Mining Corp building held its grand opening celebration on Friday, April 20.

Previously the home of Finning since 1977, it took Komatsu employees nine months to renovate the 29,000 square foot facility and make it their own.

Many attended the open house celebration, where tours were given to those interested in seeing how some of the biggest machines in the mining industry are repaired and rebuilt. Komatsu is a company that focuses on very large mining equipment, and more specifically to this area, the P&H electric rope shovel. They also work on large wheel loaders, drills, and the majority of large equipment used in the mining industry today.

Komatsu has been operational in this Sparwood location since last August, but they have been present in the Elk Valley for much longer – since 1987. Approximately 97 individuals are employed in their present location.

“It feels fantastic, it’s great for us as a team.” said Steven Droste, Komatsu Mining Corp Regional Manager, Western Canada.

“We previously occupied four separate buildings, so now we have the whole team under one roof.”

Droste addressed the crowd before the ribbon was cut, signifying the official opening of the new facility.

Steven Droste cuts the ribbon signifying the official opening of Komatsu’s new Sparwood facility. Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

“The exciting thing about this facility, is we can now offer much better support and do more for our primary customer, Teck,” he said, adding that this new space has created a much better work environment for all their employees. Droste expressed his gratitude in Teck’s continued support and confidence in them as a company.

He thanked all those whom helped them get to where they are, including stakeholders, businesses, contractors, the District of Sparwood, as well as Komatsu employees and their families.

Sparwood Mayor Cal McDougall said he was happy to see Komatsu amalgamate from several separate buildings, into one. He said this has opened up a lot of space for other small businesses.

“I’m really glad to see them move in here,” said McDougall. “It’s a nice building, it’s a big building for them. They’ve got all their people together now.”

 

Part of the guided tour included Komatsu’s welding repair tent.  Phil McLachlan/The Free Press

Part of the guided tour included Komatsu’s welding repair tent. Phil McLachlan/The Free Press