CHANDLER, Ariz. -- General Motors cut the ribbon on a major new facility in Chandler, Ariz., on Friday.
The 170,000-square-foot facility is GM's fourth Information Technology Innovation Center, and has opened its doors near Loop 202 and Price Road.
Randy Mott, senior vice president in charge of Global Information Technology and chief information officer at GM, said the purpose of these centers is to continue to bring the company's innovations and technology solutions in-house, rather than through outsourcing.
"(The facility) really kind of represents the best of our thinking, in terms of how to put together centers like this that allow our application developers (and) software engineers to really collaborate both with each other, as well as across our other innovation centers," Mott said.
The state-of-the-art building was designed and built specifically for GM, and Mott said the company chose Chandler because of the strength of its technology sector.
"[Building here] allowed us to have a wide reach of both the experienced professionals that were in the IT field, as well as universities that were graduating computer sciences and computer-related graduates," Mott said.
The center will join Austin, Tex., Roswell, Ga. and Warren, Mich., in development of software and technology services primarily for GM employees, but Mott said those developments have a strong impact on the end consumer.
Arizona Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema spoke at the ribbon cutting ceremony and said the employees at the Chandler center have an important role to fill in the future of GM.
"These smart folks right over here will create technology to give drivers new experiences," Sinema said. "From the moment they step onto the showroom floor, they can choose specs on their vehicles from an iPad to the very first time they slide behind the wheel of a hybrid or an electric vehicle."
Sinema said the technology sector of the Phoenix metro area is continuing to grow, and the new facility is yet another example of the area's effort to cultivate its technology industry.
"GM and other innovative companies are putting Arizona on the map," she said. "As a driver of economic growth, innovation and sustainability in the Southwest, that increases our global competitiveness."
Currently the new IT Innovation Center has about 500 employees and will look to double that number, with many of those coming from local universities.