Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Delphi Plant Goes Down Soon

Another unique-to-Milwaukee building goes away.

The [Oak Creek] Common Council on Tuesday approved an agreement that requires the remainder of the former Delphi Automotive Systems plant to be demolished by Oct. 31

Somebody--Gurda would be best, of course--should do an article on the Delphi (Delco) plant.

It was built to manufacture guidance systems for satellites and missles. Therefore, the entire concrete floor was built on top of massive springs which insulated the floor from the effects of Lake Michigan wave-action. The floor was also separate from the walls of the building.

You read that correctly. Even though Lake Michigan was a few miles from the plant, the delicacy of the guidance systems was so great that the tiniest "twitch" from wave-action on that lake during systems assembly could be extremely harmful.

They also had a North Star-oriented lightbeam running around the floor of the plant.

Probably one of the highest-tech plants in Milwaukee at that time, and likely still is.

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