Governor Kay Ivey on Wednesday joined leaders of Airbus, top local officials and others at the Mobile Aeroplex at Brookley for a groundbreaking ceremony to launch construction of the company’s new A220 aircraft manufacturing facility.
The plane-maker will invest $300 million and create 400 jobs in the new facility located in Mobile, Ala., which will sit beside an existing assembly line for its A320 passenger jet. The new assembly line will satisfy the strong and growing U.S. demand for the A220 aircraft, the newest offering in Airbus’ commercial aircraft product line, and create 432 full-time jobs in Mobile.
“This is a great day for Mobile and for Alabama,” Ivey said. “Airbus’ growth plans will not only create new jobs for Alabamians but also strengthen the bonds that have developed between the global aerospace company and our state. Alabama has a long history in flight and, as this project shows, a bright future in the aviation industry.”
Airbus CEO Tom Enders led the celebration and welcomed attendees including Airbus and other industry executives, Airbus manufacturing employees, state and national dignitaries, and local community leaders.
Jeff Knittel, Chairman and CEO of Airbus Americas, said that Airbus’ expansion in the United States reflects the company’s growing partnerships with customers, as well as with American supplier-partners and the communities in which the company operates across the U.S.
“Our partnerships are growing again with the addition of an A220 manufacturing facility that will employ some 400 more employees at full rate,” Knittel explained. “Together we’ve already put Mobile on the map in the world of global aviation, and together we are making a new mark for the future.”
Aircraft production is planned to begin in Q3 2019, with first delivery of a Mobile-assembled A220 aircraft scheduled for 2020. The new A220 production facilities will be complete by next year.
Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce, said that the A220 assembly line project represents an important milestone for the state’s robust and expanding aerospace sector.
“Airbus’ decision to launch production of A220 aircraft at a new assembly line in Mobile will act as a powerful catalyst for sustained growth in an industrial sector that is key to Alabama’s future,” Secretary Canfield said. “Airbus’ expanding presence in the Mobile aerospace cluster will spark significant job creation and spur additional aerospace investment in the region for many years.”