Aviation Repair Technologies, an aircraft and component repair company, on Wednesday said it would expand its facility at the Arkansas Aeroplex in Blytheville, spending more than $10 million and creating create 300 new jobs.
The new jobs will take total employment at the facility to about 600 people.
ART said the expansion will focus on the company’s component repair operations, including a machine shop and aircraft interiors and composites repair facilities.
“I am very proud of today’s announcement by ART,” said Clif Chitwood, executive director of the Great River Economic Development Foundation. “It is not easy to expand a business in these troubled economic times.
“The fact that ART is forging ahead shows their commitment to building their business in Mississippi County, their confidence in their ability to make a success of it and the continued support of both state and county in pursuing ART’s goal of making Blytheville, Arkansas one of the premier aircraft repair stations in the United States,” he said.
In April, ArkansasBusiness.com reported that the Mississippi County Quorum Court approved a $2 million incentive package to upgrade the Arkansas Aeroplex in Blytheville to accomodate the next phase of Aviation Repair Technology’s expansion.
With the help of the incentives, Aviation Repair Technologies was expected to begin a five-year period of growth, adding hundreds of jobs.
Aviation Repair Technologies executives, along with Gov. Mike Beebe and Arkansas Economic Development Commission officials, attended the official jobs announcement Wednesday in Blytheville.
Aviation Repair Technologies repairs airframes and engines, working on such aircraft as the ATR 72, Dash 8, Canadair Regional Jet, Embraer Regional Jet, MD80 and Boeing 737. It has been operating in Blytheville since 2008.
The Arkansas Aeroplex in Blytheville, which is now a general airport and industrial park, is the old Eaker Air Force base.
Source: ARKANSAS BUSINESS