Wednesday, Nov. 11, 1998 | 11:40 a.m.
The national carpenters' union will build an international center in Las Vegas to train organizers and instructors.
The United Brotherhood of Carpenters bought an 8-acre site for about $1.9 million near McCarran International Airport at Placid Street and Palmalyn Avenue.
Plans are not yet complete, but the union expects the facility to be about 100,000 square feet and will include a dormitory capable of accommodating 100 people.
The center will be used to train instructors who in turn offer training programs at locals across the United States and Canada.
It will also be used for training organizers, which has been an emphasis of the union in Las Vegas. That effort has been enhanced by the almost 2-year-old Building Trade Organizing Project, which works to organize construction trade unions.
"When the center is operational, we expect to be able to train over 3,000 members and staff each year," said national union President Doug McCarron. "As part of our organizing strategy, we have placed a renewed emphasis on both staff and skills training, and the center will play a vital role in that strategy."
Union officials say several cities were considered, but Las Vegas was chosen for its inexpensive access to air transportation and a climate that eliminates concerns about inclement weather that could hinder training programs.
Locally, the center will complement an existing 64,000-square-foot training facility operated by the Southern California-Nevada Regional Council of Carpenters that opened earlier this year.
"We're enthusiastic," said Marc Furman, administrative assistant in the council's Las Vegas office. "It will make it a lot cheaper to get training."