On October 12, 1977, IBM formally informed its employees in a corporate news bulletin of plans to build a development and manufacturing facility in Tucson, Arizona. This the text of that announcement.
IBM today announced plans for construction of a combined development laboratory and manufacturing plant on a company-owned site 11 miles southeast of Tucson, Arizona.
The new General Products Division facility, which is expected to reach approximately 500,000 square feet and 1,000 employees over the next two years, is being built to provide additional space required by the division to meet increasing demand for its products. It will be responsible for the development and manufacture of magnetic tape drives and library storage systems which will be transferred from San Jose and Boulder.
Manufacturing and site operations will report to Clarence E. Frizzell, GPD vice president - manufacturing, at San Jose. Philip S. Dauber, currently Boulder laboratory director, will be responsible for GPD development in both Boulder and Tucson.
Staffing of the facility will be primarily through transfer of GPD personnel from Boulder and San Jose, as well as from local hires.
Initial construction of buildings will start in 1978. To permit operations to begin next year, IBM will acquire temporary manufacturing, development and warehousing space in the Tucson area.