Airgas has marked the grand opening of its new industrial, medical and specialty gas facility and hardgoods store in Harvey, Louisiana, built to meet demand for cylinder gases in the metro New Orleans region.

The plant is owned and operated by Airgas Southwest, Inc., one of 12 Airgas regional companies.

$quot;This new facility is state-of-the-art and provides a more efficient supply of a wide range of packaged gases in addition to hardgoods such as welding and safety supplies,$quot; said Brent Sparks, President of Airgas Southwest.

“We serve a broad array of customer segments such as manufacturing, healthcare, food and beverage, construction, energy, and research, so there are distinct benefits to the local economies in the seven parishes of Louisiana.”

Set against a backdrop of the plant, more than 40 staff, local officials, contractors and customers gathered to participate in Airgas’ twist on the standard ribbon-cutting ceremony – a ‘chain cutting’ ceremony, using an oxygen-acetylene torch to separate a chain and officially open the property.

An open house celebration followed with community members enjoying facility tours, lunch and entertainment from KLRZ-FM and KLEB-AM who broadcasted live from the Airgas facility.

The 26,000 square foot facility on First Avenue sits on approximately four acres and fills cylinders with oxygen, nitrogen, argon, CO2, helium, propane, propylene, as well as pure specialty gas grades of nitrogen, argon, helium and oxygen.

The facility also features a hardgoods store, which supplies customers with welding equipment and safety apparel.