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Global manufacturer eyes December completion for historic guest-house project

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CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/ In October 2012, workers raised the Victaulic guest house free of its foundation and moved it about 300 feet back from its previous location to a new foundation to be incorporated into a new, larger visitor center. The site is located on Uhler Road in Forks Township. Now, Victaulic is looking to complete the project in December.
CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/ In October 2012, workers raised the Victaulic guest house free of its foundation and moved it about 300 feet back from its previous location to a new foundation to be incorporated into a new, larger visitor center. The site is located on Uhler Road in Forks Township. Now, Victaulic is looking to complete the project in December.

A global manufacturer's corporate visitors from around the world soon will have a new place to stay.

By the end of December, Victaulic, a Forks Township manufacturer of mechanical pipe joining systems, plans to finish its construction and expansion project to restore a historic hotel and transform it into a guest facility, according to Megan Longenderfer, spokeswoman for Victaulic.

Also, by the end of 2015, the company is looking to build an interactive training facility at its headquarters on Kesslerville Road in Forks, not far from the Victaulic guest house on Uhler Road.

“When completed, the expansion of this historic landmark will contain 27 rooms for future meetings, events and customer visits,” Longenderfer said.

The original structure was built around 1790, she added.

In October 2012, workers raised the guest house free of its foundation and moved it about 300 feet back from its previous location to a new foundation to be incorporated into a new, larger visitor center, Longenderfer said.

Excavation for the 16,000-square-foot addition began in October 2013, she said.

Victaulic has used more than 40 material suppliers and contractors for the project and continues to use a variety of local companies, including UGI Utilities Inc. of Reading, Wolfe House & Building Movers of Bernville, Gordon Bennett Painting of Easton and Westside Hammer Electric of Bethlehem.

Longenderfer declined to disclose the cost of the project. She said the company took care to ensure proper preservation of the original house.

“Victaulic is proud of its heritage,” Longenderfer said. “We have taken special effort to preserve the historical value of the original Uhler Road facility and ensure that the new structure will remain a period landmark for our neighborhood and the Lehigh Valley for years to come.”

At its headquarters, Victaulic plans to build a customer experience center by the end of 2015, Longenderfer said.

The center will allow Victaulic sales personnel, building owners, contractors, distributors, engineers and industry affiliates the opportunity to attend in-person training sessions, she said. Also, the center will include technical training, demonstration, conference and prefabrication rooms which will offer an overview of mechanical pipe joining systems and guidance on proper installation, she said.

The center will feature a 12,000-square-foot facility dedicated to interactive training, she said.

During their visit, training and sales attendees can go behind the scenes for a look at the factory and tour the manufacturing space.

Brian Pedersen

Brian Pedersen

Reporter Brian Pedersen covers construction, development, warehousing and real estate and keeps you up to date on the changing landscape of our community. He can be reached at brianp@lvb.com or 610-807-9619, ext. 108. Follow him on Twitter @BrianLehigh and read his blog, “Can You Dig It,” at http://www.lvb.com/section/can-you-dig-it. Brian also has a strong interest in health and fitness. He works part-time as a personal trainer at Steel Fitness Riverport in Bethlehem and earned his personal fitness trainer certification from World Instructor Training Schools.

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