Lawrence, MA Unitex and Dacon Corp. are transforming a 188,000 s/f manufacturing plant into an automated healthcare laundry and uniform service facility that is anticipated to bring 300 jobs to the city. The facility will consist of both processing and delivery operations to service the state’s life science and healthcare industries. Situated at the former location for Crown Holdings, a global can manufacturer, the new facility for phase 1 is anticipated to be completed by November. The project consists of two phases, beginning with a 90,000 s/f laundry production build-out. Additionally, new entrances, loading docks and 6,000 s/f of offices will be added.
As one of the nation’s largest family owned linen and uniform service providers to the healthcare industry, Unitex has with 11 locations in N.Y., Conn. and N.J. This is their first expansion into the Massachusetts market. Based upon a green business model, the firm’s investments in technology, operations, environmental quality and conservation training focus on conserving big 3 resources (gas, water and electricity). Efficiency measures include the reclamation of heat from wash cycles yielding a gas savings equivalent to 1,204 households and electricity savings amounting to 218 homes per year. Additionally, water softening reduces detergents and excess waste resulting in an annual water savings equivalent to 5,000 homes. Detergents are composed of 100% organic chemicals. In place of chlorine bleach an oxygen-based, biodegradable cleansing agent is used to protect waterways and reduce linen damage. As a result, their fabrics have a longer product life and less discarded solid waste. LED lighting in the facility, high speed automation and infrared monitored dryer temperature controls contribute to electricity savings. Each iron machine has its own gas burner, making it 20% more efficient. Trucks are monitored for air quality control, energy expenditure and are programmed to shut off after 3 minutes of idling. Plastic recycling totals 1.5 million pounds each year.
Unitex is an immigrant success story begun in 1915 when Max Potack began working for U & S Coat Supply. Eight years later, he purchased the business, expanding outside hospitality into long-term care facilities and hospitals, which ultimately led the firm to solely servicing healthcare industries. Today Rob Potack and David Potack are 4th generation family members to assume leadership. The firm operates 365 days a year and has attained the TRSA’s Hygienically Clean Healthcare certification for its best management practices in operations, training and sterilization,
“We are very excited to be partnering with Unitex, not only for the quality of work they bring to Massachusetts-based establishments, but also the job opportunities to Lawrence. Their long-term heritage, green commitment, focus on employee education and value of community resonates with the contributions family owned businesses make to the American economy,” said Kevin Quinn, CEO at Dacon.