A render shows the planned hangar Boeing will rent at Cecil Airport in the Westside of Jacksonville. (Rendered by the Jacksonville Aviation Authority).
Boeing, one of the world’s leading aerospace and defense contractors, began construction on October 28 on a new 370,000 square foot building. maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facility at Cecil Airport in Jacksonville, Florida.
When completed, Boeing noted in a press release, the new MRO complex will better support the company’s ability to deliver readiness results to its U.S. government customers.
The construction will build eight new hangars, additional workspace and offices where Boeing maintenance technicians, engineers and data analysts will support US Navy and Air Force planes.
The facility’s proximity to Naval Air Station Jacksonville, the Boeing Training Systems Center of Excellence in West Jacksonville, and local academic institutions make it an ideal prime location for the development and delivery of ‘innovative product support, underpinned by collaborative research and engineering, the press release said. .
The Florida Times-Union reported that the Jacksonville Aviation Authority (JAA) leased approximately 30 acres of property northeast of Cecil Airport at 5868 Approach Road.
The recent groundbreaking ceremony also celebrated the 25-year lease agreement between Boeing and the JAA. Under the agreement, the JAA will build and lease the new facility to Boeing, close to the defense contractor’s existing MRO site.
Construction is expected to be completed in 2023.
“This is the largest development project in the history of Cecil Airport,” said Mark VanLoh, CEO of JAA. “When completed, Boeing’s new facility will bring more well-paying jobs to the region, enhance Northeast Florida’s position in the aerospace industry, and position Cecil as one of the nation’s top airports for the aviation-related development. “
Homeland Preparedness News reported that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis was also in attendance for the event, where he told the crowd that the inauguration served as a milestone in the state’s role in supporting male-filled missions and the women of the country in uniform.
“Boeing’s decision to invest in new facilities at Cecil Airport in Jacksonville to ensure military support through modifications, repairs and overhauls affirms our state’s role as a leader in the ‘aerospace industry and will lead to the creation of new, highly skilled jobs that will improve our workforce, ”he said.
Boeing President and CEO Ted Colbert expects the workforce to number more than 300 new people.
“With this physical growth comes the ability to meet the changing needs of our nation’s military,” Colbert noted in the Boeing press release. “The Boeing team in Jacksonville are experts in making complex modifications to military aircraft, and we are delighted to partner with our client to tackle the future of MRO space, such as the use of data analysis to help minimize aircraft downtime or the application of digital tools to optimize and integrate our support approach. “
Since opening its existing MRO facility at Cecil Airport in 1999, Boeing technicians have serviced, modified and modernized 1,030 aircraft for the US Navy and Marine Corps, including the F / A-18 AD Hornet , the F / A-18 E / F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler, the company noted.
Boeing’s team of skilled experts are also converting F / A-18 Super Hornets into flight demonstration aircraft for the US Navy’s Blue Angel Squadron and upgrading retired F-16s to the next generation of autonomous air targets for the US Air Force. Additionally, the Jacksonville facility houses a Flight Control Repair Center that performs structural repairs on the flight control surfaces of F / A-18s AF and EA-18Gs.
In September, Boeing also won a potential $ 23.8 billion contract to continue performing critical sustainment activities for the global C-17 Globemaster III aircraft, according to a report by AirForce Technology, a source of independent information.
In its role as a global aerospace leader, Boeing develops, manufactures and services commercial aircraft, defense products and space systems for customers in more than 150 countries.