Future Ford expands after fire damage

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Two months after a huge fire ripped through the Future Ford dealership in Clovis, the company is moving forward -- not just replacing what the fire destroyed, but also expanding. A new fleet service center is expected to open in the coming weeks.

The December fire destroyed the company's main service area. While the company works to rebuild, technicians are working in tight quarters... so ownership jumped on the opportunity when a former auto body repair shop became available across town. "We're very fortunate this space is ready to go and we can't wait to occupy it. We've got vendors working around the clock to get us the equipment we need to properly service our customer's vehicles," said service director Tracy Gill.

Gill said the dealership has always wanted to expand its fleet operations and now, the timing is right. He expects the new facility to be ready within 45 days. At 24,000 square feet, Gill said it will be the largest commercial fleet service center in Central California.

For now, the company plans to add about four or five support positions but as business grows Gill believes they may also hire more technicians. Gill calls it a time of hope following the devastating fire. "The first day we got the keys, we had technicians coming out here and checking out the facility. Technicians have been involved in the planning of this and they'll also be involved in the planning of the new facility. It's their home," said Gill.

Clovis Chamber of Commerce Business Advocate Fran Blackney said the expansion is reason to celebrate. "When you triple size of your space, you're obviously going to eventually add employees so that's the way to make the economy grow," said Blackney.

Fleet sales will still be based at the current Future Ford on Shaw Avenue but all service work on fleet vehicles will be done at the new location.

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