Vermeer Corp. announced it broke ground for a monument commemorating the headquarter campus buildings destroyed by an EF3 tornado last summer.

The work is part of ongoing projects to build three new facilities, including a new plant and a new research center, at the company’s Pella, Iowa, (U.S.)-based headquarters, referred to locally as the Vermeer Mile.

The July 19 tornado injured six people and damaged multiple buildings. It was one of 14 in a line of storms that hit Central Iowa.

An EF3 tornado can have winds as high as 266 km/h (165 mph).

Leadership at the company said the tornado and the destruction was one of the greatest challenges Vermeer has ever faced. “I am incredibly proud to say our team has turned it into an opportunity,” Jason Andringa, CEO, Vermeer, said. “Not only are we rebuilding what we had, but we’re becoming stronger than ever before.”