Governor Gretchen Whitmer recently announced a landmark commitment by Oakland, Wayne, and Macomb counties to expand Automation Alley’s Project DIAMOnD. This initiative, which stands for Distributed, Independent, Agile Manufacturing on Demand, leverages a network of 3D printers to empower small manufacturers, providing them with the tools to reduce costs, increase production efficiency, and scale their businesses. This move marks a significant step towards realizing Whitmer’s vision of building the “Infrastructure for Innovation,” a statewide initiative designed to boost Michigan’s economic growth and technological leadership.

Governor Whitmer’s announcement at the Mackinac Policy Conference was nothing short of groundbreaking. With a firm belief in the transformative power of innovation, Whitmer articulated a vision where shared technological resources like 3D printers are accessible to small businesses across Michigan. By expanding Project DIAMOnD, Whitmer aims to create an environment where businesses can thrive, compete globally, and drive economic growth.

“Today’s commitment by Oakland, Wayne, and Macomb counties to expand Automation Alley’s Project DIAMOnD will help us grow our economy, lower costs for small businesses, and build out the ‘Infrastructure for Innovation’ we need to lead the future,” Whitmer stated. Her words echoed a powerful sentiment: Michigan is poised to become a leader in the next wave of industrial revolution, powered by advanced manufacturing technologies.

Project DIAMOnD was born out of necessity during the COVID-19 pandemic when supply chain disruptions highlighted the vulnerabilities of relying on overseas manufacturing. Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter spearheaded the initiative with an initial investment of $25 million. The project’s success in Oakland County has been nothing short of remarkable, allowing local businesses to cut production time and costs significantly while keeping manufacturing within the state.

“It is giving Oakland County businesses access to 3D printing technology and training that is allowing them to dramatically cut production time and costs as well as keep manufacturing right here in Michigan,” Coulter noted. The expansion to Wayne and Macomb counties, backed by federal funding from President Biden’s American Rescue Plan, signifies a collective effort to replicate this success on a larger scale.

Read the article in full here at The Michigan Chronicle.