Erie Insurance has cut the ribbon on its new state-of-the-art Technical Learning Center, the first of a trio of real estate projects in downtown Erie.
The 52,000-square-foot claims training facility incorporates a three-story model house (boasting an attic and basement, and made from 400 different building materials), as well as sprinkler and building material work stations. The center also includes 14 vehicle bays with lifts, frame repair stations, wheel alignment machines, and prep and paint booths.
“This training facility will enable employees to touch, feel, build and get a firsthand look at damage they encounter in the field,” said Erie executive Chip Dufala in a statement.
For many years, Erie had outsourced its claims training to third-party vendors.
“By creating an in-house training experience, we can ensure consistency in the learning environment and techniques, and better instill the Erie approach to customer service,” explains company spokeswoman Leah Knapp. “The skills we’ll teach will help us get our customers back in their homes, back on the road and back to normal after a loss.”
Erie is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year and is on track with two other major development projects near its downtown home office. One is the transformation of the 100-year-old C. F. Adams Building, an early company headquarters, into the Erie Insurance Heritage Center. The other is the renovation of the 93-year-old Pennsylvania National Guard Armory into office space for the company, expanding its downtown campus footprint.
Redeveloping historic properties, “enables us to maintain the rich history of this region and incorporate it with the needs of a contemporary business,” said Dufala when announcing the downtown plans in 2013.
CBT Architects of Boston designed the training center and its adjacent parking garage. The new facility also includes an installation by found-object artist Michelle Stitzlein, who recreated the Erie logo from repurposed automotive and building materials.
Source: Leah Knapp, Erie Insurance
Writer: Elise Vider