LOTS! tonnes of machines still left, and the place is massive!
24 hour guard
Built: 1965 Closed: 2009
long pants / sleeves
1965- Canada-United States Automotive Agreement, better known as the Auto Pact, is signed, which requires that for every car sold here, one had to be made here. It also requires that every Canadian-made car have 60 per cent Canadian content in parts and labour. New Budd plant for Kitchener kept a secret in the media until Toronto paper breaks the story. Budd buys 120 acres from Kitchener for $300,000. Workforce estimate goes from 400 to 750.
1966 - Construction of plant begins; Budd says workforce to increase to 1,000 workers.
1967 - Plant starts production.
1968 - Budd’s 750 workers agree to a three-year pact, which delivers a 40-per-cent wage increase that brings production workers’ hourly wage to $4.45 an hour. The workers strike for two months over the summer.
1969 - Budd plant posts a profit of $2.5 million, despite lower frame sales.
1970 - Company announces $40 million expansion and says workforce to increase to 1,500.
1971 - Company earns $1.5 million, thanks to brisk sales. Directors say the newly expanded plant is beginning to realize its potential. Employment reaches 2,000 workers.
1972 - Budd shifts tool and die work to Philadelphia to help a work shortage there, but local plant’s profit hits $6.9 million as frame sales surge.
1973 - Plant profits hit $8.4 million. Nearly 2,000 workers stage wildcat strike after company refuses them breaks from the stifling heat during a July heat wave.
1974 - Steel shortages and auto sales slump cut company profit to $4.8 million. Budd lands AMC as a customer, and makes frames for the Pacer. A reduced workforce of 1,700 ratifies three-year deal, giving them parity with U.S. workers. A wildcat strike in August almost results in court action.
1975 - Budd loses GM contract to Dana Corp. of Pa., which prompts Kitchener Mayor Edith MacIntosh to go to Ottawa seeking government aid for the ailing auto sector. Profit sinks to $2 million as 850 workers are laid off.
1976 - The plant lands a new frame contract with GM, pledges to return staff to full complement.
1977 - Union signs three-year deal, ending a short strike. Production workers pay rises to $8.67. Plant employment rises to 2,700. Profit hits $8.3 million.
1978 - Rumours of a Budd Co. takeover circulate. Thyssen confirmed as the buyer in April. Loss of a Ford contract threatens 1,000 jobs.
1979 - $9.9 million profit for Budd Canada, as plant reaches peak of more than 3,000 workers, with some estimates suggesting a workforce of 3,300. The company sees 68 illegal work stoppages between 1978-79, but management and union pledge to turn the page. Hugh Sloan appointed Budd Canada president.
1980 - Plant operates at less than 50 per cent capacity as more than 1,100 worker laid off. Budd Canada president Hugh Sloan calls it an “outright depression” in the automotive industry. Plant, UAW, strike three-year collective agreement. Worker numbers fall to 685.
1981 - Budd management says UAW refusal to adjust its collective agreement is reason for a lost GM contract. Workforce grows to 1,400 workers, but 821 layoffs given to workers in November. Profit sinks to $3 million.
1982 - Company suspends dividends as recession continues. Company employs about 850-1,000 workers and invests $20 million to automate the plant. It lands two new contracts but loses $8.9 million.
1983 - Company loses $2.2 million as Sloan describes state of auto industry as being in a “a recession of monumental proportions.” Company sells off Brampton engineering division.
1984 - Company returns to profitability of $11.25 million, expands plant. Labour relations improved as company nominated for national labour standards award.
1985 - Workers ratify new three-year deal without a strike for first time since 1971. Profits rise to record $26.7 million. News of a Toyota plant in Cambridge seen as good news. Hugh Sloan resigns.
1986 - Plant wins new contract with Ford as employment reaches 1,750. Profits hit $27.8 million.
1987 - New labour deal reached between Budd, CAW months before old contract expires. Profits hit $26 million.
1988 - Profits sink to $19.5 million.
1989 - Hundreds of layoffs in anticipation of a slowdown. Free Trade replaces Auto Pact. Profits hit $27.6 million.
1990 - Profits fall to $18.5 million, due to high Canadian dollar, struggles in the domestic auto industry.
1991- Profits plummet to $1.6 million, due to recession. An April strike becomes violent when company attempts to drive trucks into the plant. Heated standoff as train attempts to enter plant. Strike ends after 16 days, with plant closure agreement.
1992 - Profits improve to $3.6 million.
1993 - $2.7-million profit marks 10th straight profitable year. Workers reject contract extension, which calls for two-year wage freeze.
1994 - Costs to retool factory eat into financials, as company posts $8.8 million loss, despite surging sales. A new contract is signed in January and a new deal with Mercedes is struck.
1995 - $3.3 million profit is credited in part to the weak loonie.
1996 - Budd Canada renamed Thyssen Budd Canada. Profit rises to $6.4 million. 2,000 people line up for 50 production line jobs at Budd in June.
1997 - $6.7 million profit as workforce remains steady at 1,400. Workers ratify new deal that company says will put it in position to land GM deal to make 360 light truck platform.
1998 - ThyssenKrupp formed out of merger. Budd undergoes $4-million expansion and posts $7.4-million profit.
1999 - Plant posts $8.6-million profit and plans to spend $100-million to upgrade plant to hydroforming technology. Workforce grows to 1,700.
2000 - Profit of $2.1 million as workforce grows to 1,900. The investment in new equipment said to be $150-million, as company warns of huge loss.
2001 - Plant posts loss of $94.2 million. Workforce grows to 2,000, because of GM contract for SUV frames.
2002 - Loss of $68.8-million. Company trims staff by 100 as it tries to return to profitability.
2003 - ThyssenKrupp Budd still losing money, cuts jobs due to new efficiency improvements.
2004 - Company posts $14.1-million loss. German parent warns of more job losses, due to contracts ending and SUVs falling out of favour.
2005 - Workforce shrinks to 1,300, as GM SUV sales drop 16 per cent.
2006 - Plant changes name to Kitchener Frame after Martinrea International buys 12 plants from ThyssenKrupp. Active workforce reduced to 950 workers.
2007 - Auto industry strikes in the U.S., combined with continuing SUV sales slump and high dollar, force more layoffs as active workforce shrinks to 750.
2008 - In February, Martinrea says it intends to close Kitchener Frame by April, since it has no further contracts following the GM deal. A pact is reach to extend production to 2010, but GM’s closure of its SUV plant in Ohio, which Kitchener Frame supplies, kills all hopes. Most remaining workers let go before Dec. 23. Last frame completed on Dec. 2.
-------------------- 2017 - Not totally demolished - There are still two buildings remaining. They are wide open. Security usually on site.