DURYEA — State grants from casino revenue have helped several businesses expand throughout northeastern and central Pennsylvania.
On Monday, a high-tech glass manufacturer in Luzerne County opened its doors to show off what it’s doing with that casino cash.
When we think of glass, it’s typically car windshields or windows, but Schott North America in Duryea says the casino money is helping them make glass that can do a lot more than your average pane.
The glass is not crystal clear but that’s a good thing at Schott North America in Duryea. The high-performance porous glass is being made to withstand heat for supersonic planes.
Developers say it’s also being used to make medications used to treat things like cancer and lupus.
“These controlled pores in the glass capture the part of the drug that you want. The rest of the drug development that you don’t need gets flushed away,” said Schott North America official Jim Stein.
Our cameras were not allowed inside to see exactly how it is done, but Schott’s facility in Duryea is the only place in the country right now making that porous glass.
“There are world-class innovations going on throughout small communities around the country, and Duryea is one of those communities,” Stein said.
Part of the company’s investment came from a $100,000 state grant. The money is collected from casinos across the state, including Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs near Wilkes-Barre.
“We didn’t know exactly what it was. Coming here now and seeing what it is, it’s very interesting to see the technology that they add into the glass,” said Duryea Mayor Keith Moss
Moss says the expansion at Schott is a good use of the state’s gaming grants that are routinely given to businesses and projects that help the local economy.
“Keep this company going and keep on coming up with different products that they could make here at this facility and instead of shipping it out of state or even out of the country.”
Officials at Schott say they’re ramping up their manufacturing of porous glass and they were able to hire a handful of new workers.