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Varian Medical breaks ground on Salt Lake expansion project

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 27 2014 5:01 p.m. MDT

Mark Jonaitis, left, Vice President of Operations, talks with Governor Jon Huntsman during a tour of Varian Medical System's 268,000 square-foot manufacturing facility in Salt Lake City Monday, August 29, 2005. Varian Medical Systems broke ground Wednesday on a new expansion project that will increase its current Salt Lake manufacturing facility and create 1,000 new full-time jobs in the state over the next 20 years.

Jason Olson, Deseret News Archives

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SALT LAKE CITY — Varian Medical Systems broke ground Wednesday on a new expansion project that will increase its current Salt Lake manufacturing facility and create 1,000 new full-time jobs in the state over the next 20 years.

Located at 1678 S. Pioneer Road in Salt Lake City, the Utah facility serves as the U.S. headquarters for manufacturing of Varian’s X-ray products. The additional space will allow for Varian’s flat panel image detector and X-ray tube product lines, as well as "clean rooms," research and development laboratories, expanded manufacturing space and administrative offices, the company said in a prepared statement.

“Utah is home to hardworking people with immense engineering and technical talent, many of whom can be credited with Varian’s success in the manufacturing of our state-of-the-art X-ray technology,” said Dow Wilson, CEO of Palo Alto, California-based Varian Medical Systems.

Varian currently employs 860 people in Utah.

Human resources director Chad Holman said the timeline for hiring over the next five to 10 years will be to add about 400 production workers, including about 30 to 40 engineers and about 20 facilities personnel to handle the extra space. He also noted that since the company is transitioning some departments from the corporate office in Palo Alto, such as accounts payable, accounts receivable and the credit department, that would add another 40-plus employees in the near term.

Holman said they anticipate a need for more professional office personnel as well as some human resources people to handle the added volume.

The Utah expansion will add 135,000 square feet to the existing 341,000-square-foot building and is expected to generate more than $400 million in new state wages.

The GOED Board of Directors approved a tax credit of $7.1 million in anticipation of receiving more than $35 million from Varian in new state tax revenues over the 15-year life of the agreement. Each year as Varian meets the criteria in its contracts with the state, the company will earn a portion of the tax credit.

“With Utah’s job growth at its highest since the recession, Varian Medical Systems could not have chosen a better time or place for its expansion,” said Val Hale, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.

Email: jlee@deseretnews.com

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