BAY MINETTE, Ala. (WKRG) — It’s been talked about for months, but Friday, Novelis is finally breaking ground in Baldwin County.

“This aluminum recycling facility is here for the long haul. It’s going to change a lot for the good in Alabama,” said Alabama Governor Kay Ivey.

Novelis, the world leader in producing aluminum for the automobile, beverage and aviation industry, will build an integrated mill at the Mega Site in Bay Minette bringing more than a thousand jobs and a longtime commitment to south Alabama with a $2.5 billion investment.

“You know it was kind of just a whirlwind process when they came to us and said, ‘Hey we need a site that can move fast, that can be ready.’ We were in the process of doing preliminary site work out here and it just married up,” said Lee Lawson with the Baldwin County Economic Development Alliance.

The company already has 15,000 employees worldwide. The average salary comes in around $65,000 a year. These good paying jobs are coming soon to those ready to work. If you’re interested, company President Steve Fisher says some of the positions will be advertised soon. Then, Novelis will start the training process before the facility opens.

“We will be taking our workforce to other of our facilities helping them learn the process of what we do and then bringing them back here,” explained Fisher.

Production is expected to begin at the new facility sometime in early 2025, but the impact in Bay Minette starts now.

“It’s going to mean a lot for this community. North Baldwin over the last decade was flat in growth and every other city in the county was growing 8 percent, 9 percent, 15 percent. So now, North Baldwin’s time to shine in the sun is here,” added Lawson.