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The Geneva Steel Plant near Orem was the largest and most significant of several defense-related industries developed in Utah during the World War II period. The $200 million plant was financed by the federal government to insure that the nation’s steel industry would be able to meet the increased demand for steel by both military and industrial users. The actual construction and operation of the plant was turned over to Columbia Steel Company and the U.S. Steel Corporation. Approximately 10,000 workers were involved in the construction project, which extended from November 1941 to December 1944. Shortages of construction workers, equipment, and materials delayed the completion of the plant and made it more costly than planned.

The Columbia Steel Company was previously located near Provo at Ironton.