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Grand Opening of $53 Million Westlake Facility

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Jim Moran (center) and Dr. Shoichiro Toyoda are greeted by Jacksonville associates at the grand opening of the Westlake Vehicle Processing Facility.

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Jim Moran and Dr. Shoichiro Toyoda cut the ceremonial ribbon with other officials from Toyota and SET during the Westlake Grand Opening. (L to R) SET Vice President and General Manager of Vehicle Processing Bob Moore, JMFE President and CEO Colin Brown, President and CEO of Toyota Motor North America Tag Taguchi, Jim Moran, Dr. Shoichiro Toyoda, President and CEO of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. Yoshi Inaba, Chairman Pat Moran, Executive Vice President and COO of Toyota Motor Sales Jim Press and SET President and General Manager Ken Czubay.

In 2003, JM Family celebrated the grand opening of Southeast Toyota’s Vehicle Processing Center in the Westlake Industrial Park on the northwest side of Jacksonville. The cost to build the facility totaled $53 million. At the time of the opening, Westlake encompassed more than 280,000 square feet of workspace across 250 acres with an option to purchase an additional 250 acres for continued growth. Although the facility has expanded in recent years, when it opened in 2003 it included nine buildings, 75 acres of blacktop, state-of-the-art processing equipment and a 50-car railhead. Westlake continues to be used for the exclusive purpose of processing and delivering Toyota vehicles. The strategic need to invest in an all-rail facility on the opposite side of Jacksonville from where the Port was located was to accommodate the tremendous growth of vehicles arriving from Toyota’s North American manufacturing plants in Freemont, Calif., Georgetown, Ky., and Princeton, Ind. Jim Moran was joined by Honorary Chairman of Toyota Motor Corporation Dr. Shoichiro Toyoda, and hundreds of Southeast Toyota associates at the grand opening celebration. That same year, SET logged its 5 millionth sale, a fitting cap on a year of incredible growth for the company.