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Century Linen holds open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony

Century Linen owner Richard Smith, scissors in hand, cuts the ribbon dedicating the company's new building at the Crossroads Industrial Park in Gloversville. (The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich)

GLOVERSVILLE — Numerous guests were on hand, as Century Linen & Uniform Inc. dedicated its new Crossroads Industrial Park facility Thursday with an open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony coordinated by the Fulton Montgomery Regional Chamber of Commerce.

Century Linen Chief Executive Officer Richard Smith led tours of the laundry business for chamber members, company executives and staff, invited guests and state Sen. James Tedisco and state Assemblyman Robert Smullen.

“This is going to be a wonderful asset to our community,” Tedisco said.

Officials also got together to cut a ribbon dedicating the new, high-tech plant.

Among many other entities, Smith thanked three main contractors — Fulton County Electric, L&M Mason Contractors, and Adirondack Mechanical to get the new building operational.

State Sen. James Tedisco, left, learns about a high-tech laundry operation from Century Linen owner Richard Smith during a tour Thursday of the company's new building at the Crossroads Industrial Park in Gloversville. (The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich)

“This is a great example of Fulton County positive,” said Smullen.

Gloversville-based Century Linen & Uniform Inc. did an expansion project at the park, located on Route 29 in the city. The project received a boost from a $1.2 million Community Development Block Grant. Smith and staff showed off its new 50,000-square-foot building at 125 Balzano Drive during one of the chamber’s workplace tours.

During the tour, Smith showed the various laundry and clothes-cleaning operations, including the “tunnel washer” area that acts like 13 different washing machines tied together. It was noted 5,000 pounds per hour of material can be washed.

Century Linen & Uniform (formerly Robison & Smith) provides linen service to healthcare operations, linen service and uniform service to hospitality businesses (restaurants and hotels), and linen and uniform service to industrial customers all over New York state. The company also offers floor mat service, facility services, restroom supplies, and more.

The firm’s Healthcare Linen Service programs are designed and accredited to reduce the risk of infection, improve patient comfort and care, as well as reduce waste and environmental impact. The family-run company since 1915 has made a new $6.3 million private investment in the area. The company has Fulton County facilities at 335 N. Main St. in Gloversville and 542 N. Perry St. in Johnstown. The company also has service centers on Railroad Avenue Albany, on North Peterboro Street in Canastota in Madison County, and in Potsdam in St. Lawrence County.

Century Linen workers listen to a program Thursday dedicating the company's new building at the Crossroads Industrial Park in Gloversville. (The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich)

Smith had said the last few years he preferred to stay in Fulton County, although he has had opportunities to move to other municipalities in the Capital District.

In making the dedication Thursday, Smith thanked several entities that helped bring his project to fruition. They included the Fulton County Center for Regional Growth, Fulton County Industrial Development Agency, and the city of Gloversville.

Century Linen currently employs about 330 full-time people statewide. Officials say the project was needed by Century Linen to upgrade and modernize its operation, remain competitive and support recent and future growth of its business. Century Linen has told the IDA that more than 30 new jobs are expected to be created with the expansion.

Smith said area and state officials served as significant partners as he secured Consolidated Funding Application money for his new operation.

“We finally ended up here in a warehouse,” albeit a high-tech operation suiting Century’s needs, Smith said.

State Sen. James Tedisco, right, learns about a laundry operation from Century Linen owner Richard Smith during a tour Thursday of the company's new building at the Crossroads Industrial Park in Gloversville. (The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich)

The new operation on Balzano Drive operates in two shifts, six days a week, he said.

Tedisco thanked Smith for the tour, which he said was an “eye-opener” for him.

“That technology is helping to protect our environment, saving water and the right amount of detergent,” Tedisco said.

He said he learned many years ago that with the right “team” of people and goals, “unbelievable” things can happen. He kidded about the company’s name, joking that he thought in would “take a century” to get financing for the project done.

“This has been a long time coming,” Tedisco said.

State Sen. James Tedisco and state Assemblyman Robert Smullen listen to Century Linen owner Richard Smith, right, take a tour Thursday of the company's new building at the Crossroads Industrial Park in Gloversville. (The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich)

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at manich@leaderherald.com.

Century Linen's new building o Balzano Drive at the Crossroads Industrial Park in Gloversville is seen Thursday. (The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich)

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