Wolseley plc, Reading, England, will invest more than $30 million to build a 220,000-sq.-ft. headquarters facility for its North American operations in Newport News, VA.

"This will be 100% corporate office space," said Chip Hornsby, who will become group chief executive of the parent company effective Aug. 1, succeeding Charlie Banks.

The Wolseley North America organization consists of Ferguson Enterprises, acquired by Wolseley in 1982 and headquartered in Newport News; Stock Building Supply, acquired in 1986 and based in Raleigh, NC; and Wolseley Canada, previously Westburne, acquired by Wolseley in 2001 and headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, Canada. Each of the three companies will continue to operate from its respective offices.

Construction will begin this spring and is expected to be completed in 2007.

Ferguson expanded its Newport News headquarters in 2003 and has already filled it to capacity. “We are literally out of space,” Hornsby said. “Ferguson has grown to 18,800 associates, and we have 35,000 total in our North America operations. We project continued growth.”

Wolseley already has plans for additional facilities to be built in Newport News after this one, he added.

Virginia Governor Mark R. Warner and Newport News Mayor Joe Frank were in attendance for this announcement. Above is an artist's rendering of the new building.