The City of Pensacola and ST Engineering North America celebrated the groundbreaking for a new aircraft maintenance hangar at the Pensacola International Airport today, Thursday, July 1. Secretary of the Florida Department of Transportation Kevin Thibault, Florida Secretary of Commerce Jamal Sowell, and Pensacola Mayor Grover C. Robinson, IV officiated at the groundbreaking ceremony organized by the City of Pensacola.
To view and download photos from the groundbreaking ceremony, click here.
The construction of the new hangar is the first phase in the development of a 655,000 square foot airframe Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul, or MRO, complex that was originally announced in October 2018. The project expands on an existing two-bay widebody hangar operated by ST Engineering. When fully completed, the expansion will add three large state-of-the-art hangars and associated support shops, and around 1.5 million labor hours to ST Engineering’s annual capacity in Pensacola.
“We are excited to see construction begin on Project Titan, and we look forward to the opportunities it will bring to the City of Pensacola and our entire region,” Mayor Robinson said. “This project will allow Pensacola to become a regional center for excellence for the MRO industry, bringing 1,700 high-paying jobs and expanding educational programming, which will continue to build a brighter future for Pensacola. This project will also indirectly create significant economic spinoffs in the Pensacola and the region’s economy in terms of demand for goods and services that will be generated as a result of this development.”
“Project Titan is a generational gamechanger for our community,” Pensacola International Airport Director Matt Coughlin said. “We would not be here today without the support of our federal, state and local governments in addition to our various partnerships to include ST Aerospace. We have faced a lot of challenges as a community since the inception of this project, but we will persevere, as evidenced by today’s groundbreaking.”
The total development cost for the airframe MRO complex is budgeted at $210 million, funding for which comes from ST Engineering, Triumph Gulf Coast, Inc., the City of Pensacola, Escambia County, the State of Florida and other state and federal organizations. The complex is expected to bring about 1,300 jobs to Pensacola. When combined with the first hangar, the total number of jobs at the facility will reach about 1,700. To meet the future demand for talent expected at the facility, ST Engineering is exploring the creation of an Aviation Training Academy that would add an additional 150 graduates a year to the local aviation maintenance programs.
“We are thrilled at the opportunity to strengthen our existing partnership with the City of Pensacola and play a major role in its post-pandemic recovery and growth,” shared Tom Vecchiolla, ST Engineering North America President and CEO. “We are driven by our commitment to help customers be better prepared, better protected and better connected for a more sustainable future. Through Project Titan, we pledge to do just that.”
Jeffrey Lam, President of Commercial Aerospace, ST Engineering, said, “The plan to go ahead with the expansion is a reflection of our confidence in the sector’s long-term prospects and growth as the aviation industry in the U.S. and the rest of the world gradually recover from the pandemic. We are extremely grateful for the strong support provided by the City of Pensacola and the State of Florida, and we look forward to being a significant contributor to the region’s aviation and economic ecosystem through this milestone project. We are also taking the opportunity to ensure that the new hangars are built with sustainability in mind to reduce the carbon footprint of the business.”
Besides Pensacola, ST Engineering currently operates aviation MRO facilities in Mobile, Alabama; San Antonio, Texas and Middle River, Maryland, and offers aircraft engine washes through EcoServices in Wethersfield, Connecticut. The expansion plan in Pensacola, which aligns with the Group’s commitment to invest in its core business, would strengthen ST Engineering North America’s aerospace network in the U.S. to better serve its growing customer base in the Americas.