Composite decking manufacturer Trex Co. Inc. opened 200,000 square feet of manufacturing and support facilities next to its headquarters in Winchester, Va., capping off a $200 million expansion program that increased capacity by 70 percent in about 18 months.
The extruder of recycled polyethylene and wood fiber decking announced in June 2019 that it would add production lines in Fernley, Nev., and build the Winchester facility to meet increased demand for low-maintenance products that enhance outdoor living spaces.
Trex and other composite and PVC decking manufacturers have been steadily chipping away at the market share of pressure-treated lumber, in part with new lower-priced products that have scalloped undersides. The profile uses less material, allowing manufacturers to reduce prices and compete better with wood decking.
The pandemic declared in March 2020 brought even more interest in creating backyard havens for working, playing and entertaining. Decking sales went through the roof.
Trex fired up its new Nevada lines in June 2020. The completion of the new Winchester plant was announced in a Jan. 12 news release.
The company said construction crews used 8,500 cubic yards of concrete in the foundation, 75,000 square feet of exterior precast, 1,500 tons of structural steel and 3 million linear feet of wiring.
"This will be the most productive and efficient composite decking facility designed for maximum output," Adam Zambanini, president of Trex Residential Products, said in the release. "The building is equipped with state-of-the-art, proprietary extrusion technology that allows us to manufacture Trex decking using 95 percent recycled content, with an emphasis on quality and energy-efficient systems."
Trex's investments in Nevada and Virginia created 350 new jobs while giving the company a historic milestone to celebrate as it enters 2021, according to company officials.
"Trex is in an unmatched position to lead the industry in production output and to meet the demands of our customers in the coming years," Zambanini said.
Trex President and CEO Bryan Fairbanks said it took foresight and confidence to poise the company for what he expects to be an era of growth.
"These strategic investments reinforce our faith in the future of Trex, our category leadership and our long-term commitment to deliver industry-leading products and service to our trade partners and customers," Fairbanks said.
Founded in 1993, Trex opened its first production lines in Virginia with 36 employees. The company now employs 1,200, including 12 of the initial hires.
With 2019 profile sales of $694 million, Trex is ranked as the seventh-largest pipe, profile and tubing extruder in North America, according to Plastics News' latest rankings.
Trex posted overall sales of $745.3 million, including metal railing, in 2019. The company says its sales reached $817 million for the 12 months ending Sept. 30, 2020.