Industrial and consumer product company, 3M Co. announced plans Oct. 2 to close its Northwest Austin manufacturing plant by the end of 2019, affecting 120 employees, 3M External Communications Manager Lori Anderson said.

The 220,000 square-foot plant has been in operation since 1982 at 11705 Research Blvd. and is closing so 3M can move its Austin-based manufacturing operations to another 3M manufacturing plant in New Ulm, Minnesota, Anderson said.

"This is part of our ongoing efforts to optimize supply chain operations," Anderson said.

Employees at the Northwest Austin plant were informed of the decision Oct. 2. Over the course of 2019, employees will be given 60-day notices in phases and be offered severance packages as well as outplacement support, Anderson said.

3M's shifting Austin presence

Anderson said the decision to close the Research Boulevard manufacturing facility does not affect the development of the 3M Austin Center at the Parmer Austin business park located east of I-35 and northeast of the intersection of E. Parmer Lane and McCallen Pass.

In June 2017, 3M announced it was selling its Four Points campus at 6801 River Place Blvd., Austin, to the World Class Capital Group, a real estate-focused investment firm. Employees at the Four Points campus will move to 3M's new campus in the Parmer Austin business park starting in April 2019, Anderson said.

After the closing of the Research Boulevard manufacturing facility by the end of 2019, 3M's only Austin presence will be at its Parmer Austin business park location.