A China-based manufacturer of architectural glass is seeking assistance from the Brookhaven Town Industrial Development Agency to build an $18.9 million manufacturing and distribution facility in Shirley. It would be the company’s first U.S. operation.

Founded in 2002, Beijing Wuhuatianbao Glass Co. Ltd., known as WHTB Glass, says on its website that it has the largest architectural glass production facility in China, and specializes in making solar reflective, laminated, curved and fire-resistant glass used in the construction of skyscrapers and other structures.

The company is in “negotiations for the potential purchase of the site,” according to the application submitted Dec. 7. The project would take 12 to 15 months to complete, the application says.

Bram Weber, a Melville attorney representing the company, declined to comment Wednesday.

The 44,000-square-foot production facility would be built on a 4.23-acre vacant lot on Ramsey Road near the Long Island Expressway. The company expects to employ 143 workers when the facility is complete, IDA chief executive Lisa Mulligan said Wednesday morning during the IDA’s first meeting of the year.

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A public hearing must be scheduled before tax benefits can be approved.

“Brookhaven welcomes the opportunity to work with this company and its first U.S. manufacturing operation,” IDA chairman Fred Braun said.