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JDA meets with ready-to-move home developer

By Staff | Aug 30, 2013

The Executive Committee of the Rugby Job Development authority met earlier this month with a developer of ready-to-move homes who gauged interest in bringing a production facility to Rugby.

Rick Downs, who runs U.S. Production and Marketing for the ATechBuilder Corporation, said he’s looking for local stakeholders to start the production facility of American RTM Homes.

Downs is hosting an information meeting on Sept. 4 at 7 p.m. in the Yellow Conference Room at Dakota Farms.

Downs said Rugby is ideally located to a number of the major markets for the homes, which are built on site and moved by truck.

“Everyone knows about the Bakken,” he said. “Rugby is close enough, yet far enough to make it a viable location for this type of production facility. There’s a very strong market for RTM homes in southern Saskatchewan and Manitoba. A location in close proximity to the border is a very good location if you want to develop markets into Canada. (It’s near) the Bakken, Canada, and has reasonable access to eastern North Dakota, which is a good market in a lot of areas as well. If you’re looking at where you can produce RTM homes, Rugby has access to three good markets.”

The RTM homes are generally between 1,100 and 2,500 square feet and can be built as custom homes as well as stock units.

Downs said he discussed the possibility of an indoor production facility with the JDA Executive Commitee.

“The reason for that, you’ve got so many problems with weather and wind,” he said. “Once we get into an indoor facility, it creates a much better environment for producing homes.”

According to the ATechBuilder website, production facilities are generally built as a stand alone OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) or integrated with a retail business like a lumber yard or a retail home center.

“We want to work with anyone who’s doing the same thing as we are,” Downs said. “The point of the presentation is to throw out information and different models. If there’s interest, we’re going to sit down and discuss it.”

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