As the United States eagerly awaits more solid economic recovery, positive signs in the market feel like a cooling rain after a five-year drought. At Georgia-Pacific, we believe there are emerging signs in the housing market that are whetting the appetite for more building products.
This has led us to develop plans for nearly $400 million in potential investments in our plywood and lumber operations. We have plans for facility expansions and equipment upgrades that will further strengthen our commitment to meet customers’ needs in the building products industry.
We’ve approved funding for significant engineering efforts and we’re evaluating facilities in a number of southern states, including North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas and Texas. For our lumber facilities, we plan to streamline workflow in our plants to improve efficiency and output. For locations that produce plywood, we are planning to add equipment to increase production and use more of each log.
These improvements would increase our overall capacity by approximately 20 percent. Start-up would be expected in the second half of 2014 through the beginning of 2015, pending final site selection and permitting.
Since 2006, our building products business has invested close to $1.5 billion in capital for property and equipment upgrades and acquisitions. This includes the 2007 purchase of several International Paper building products assets and the 2010 Grant Forest Products acquisition. We also continue to plan for the more than $700 million acquisition of the Temple-Inland Building Products assets.
At Georgia-Pacific, we're excited for this renewed building of the industry. Bring on the rain.