Originally opened as a small service facility on the edge of an orange grove, 2016 will mark the ABC Florida location’s 40th year in operation.
Started as a hobby during his “first retirement” by founder Clancy Cornell, the original five-acre facility in Winter Garden, Fla., fortuitously became the incubator for the company’s now nationwide repair and service network. The ABC Service division currently operates in seven locations — covering the entire country from coast to coast.
In 1974 Clancy Cornell purchased a five-acre property in Winter Garden, Fla., just outside the Orlando area. “Our dad quickly recognized that the area’s booming tourism industry and its impact on tour and charter operations was driving strong demand for quality equipment and service,” said ABC’s Chairman/CEO Dane Cornell. “When he first opened shop in Winter Garden we were all hands-on with servicing the buses. We would literally drive the buses underneath a makeshift garage my dad constructed from a shipping container built with a lean-to roof.”
Now 40 years later, ABC’s Winter Garden facility boasts a modern sales and service operation that spans 56,000 square feet located on 30 acres. The location features a 10,000 sq. ft. collision facility, 10,000 sq. ft. paint and graphics operation with three paint booths, a 3,500 sq. ft. showroom and 23 service bays.
Additionally, two individual parts warehouses span 15,000 sq. feet, and provide on-site access to an extensive inventory of replacement parts for popular equipment makes and models on the road today. This enables ABC Service to provide quick turnaround on routine parts replacement and service requests. The parts facility also serves as the distribution center for weekly container shipments of Van Hool parts. As they arrive from overseas, shipments are sorted and deployed from the Florida location to replenish ABC parts and service centers around the country.
The facility is also home to the second and third generations of Cornell’s, who continue to steer the family-run business from their Florida location. The strategic location, combined with a full-service offering of sales, service, parts, warranty support and live customer support center make the facility the busiest of ABC’s locations nationwide.