Changing economic landscape in Manitowoc County

Published: Jan. 16, 2018 at 5:26 PM CST
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A company with local roots is moving into the Manitowoc Company's headquarters after it relocates headquarters to Milwaukee.

This comes after Manitowoc Company laid off more than 500 employees and moved production to Pennsylvania in 2016.

Currently Manitowoc's employment opportunities look different than when Dean Halverson of Leede Research was in high school.

"You said, I'm going to work at Mirro or I'm going to work at Manitowoc Cranes," Halverson said. "And that really sustained this community for probably three or four generations."

Mirro moved manufacturing to Mexico in 2003, and Manitowoc Company announced this week it's completely leaving the city when it moves its headquarters to Milwaukee.

Peter Wills of Progress Lakeshore says those changes mean a more diverse economy in Manitowoc County.

"Typically what ended up, we had a period of time a few large companies and many just vendor companies," Mills said, "to now it's companies that are selling the goods and services themselves, be able to do diversified markets."

Wills says the unemployment rate is low, and plastics, health care and food production industries are strong in Manitowoc.

Many businesses are looking to expand, like Investors Community Bank. It will be moving into the Manitowoc Company headquarters building.

"It is nice to be able to move into that facility and kind of carry on the legacy a little bit there" Tim Schneider, CEO of ICB, said. "It's a beautiful property."