The city issued permits March 11 for The Haskell Co. to build the Boeing Global Services aircraft hangar and central utility plant building at Cecil Airport a combined cost of $109 million.
Boeing is developing an aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul facility at the West Jacksonville airport owned by the Jacksonville Aviation Authority.
The 365,623-square-foot hangar has a construction cost of $101.9 million and the utility plant is $7.08 million.
Jacksonville-based Haskell is the contractor and Pond & Co. is the architect.
The projects are at 5868 Approach Road.
The city issued a site-clearing and civil site-work permit Jan. 21 for about 115 acres at a construction cost of $18.7 million.
A pending permit for underground utility work for JAA at the site is $12 million.
The approved and pending permits total a project cost of $139.7 million.
Boeing Global Services CEO Ted Colbert said at a groundbreaking ceremony Oct. 27 that when the eight-hangar complex opens in 2023, it will be the aviation industry’s “first digitally enabled” maintenance repair and overhaul site.
Colbert told federal, state and city officials that the project will allow Boeing to understand the maintenance and repair needs of U.S. military aircraft before they land at Cecil.
“We don’t have to wait for the aircraft to arrive so that we can strip it down and do the analysis,” he said.
“We can get straight to the work using data insights to get the aircraft back performing for critical missions around the world.”
The project is a partnership of Boeing, JAA and the city.
Boeing reached a 25-year lease agreement with JAA on Dec. 17, 2020, to expand the aerospace company’s 400,000-square-foot operation at Cecil.
JAA CEO Mark VanLoh said before the event that the aviation authority purchased the steel for the project during the pandemic to control materials costs.
JAA will pay for the project through debt financing.
The facility comprises about 270,000 square feet of hangar space and more than 100,000 square feet of office and support shop space on 57 acres, according to JAA.
VanLoh said Boeing’s MRO facility at Cecil will lead the aerospace industry in resource, skill and technology optimization.
According to the city Office of Economic Development, Boeing will create 334 jobs for the facility at an average annual salary of $65,000.
The new jobs will be in place by Dec. 31, 2026, at a $21.7 million payroll excluding benefits.
The city is giving Boeing a $425,000 grant to assist with the estimated $3 million in infrastructure expenditures for the project over three years.
At the groundbreaking, Mayor Lenny Curry said the grant will help pay for stormwater drainage areas, fencing and extending sewer, electrical and water lines.
Boeing has operated its existing MRO facilities at Cecil Airport since 1999. According to a news release, the company has modified and upgraded 1,030 aircraft for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps including the F/A-18 A-D Hornet; F/A-18 E/F Super Hornet; and EA-18G Growler.
The company also uses Cecil to convert F/A-18 Super Hornets into flight demonstration aircraft for the Blue Angels squadron and modified retired F-16s into autonomous aerial targets for the Air Force.
Boeing’s Flight Control Repair Center provides structural repairs to F/A-18 A-F; EA-18G and the Navy’s P-8 aircraft.
Colbert said Boeing and its military customers are finalizing what equipment will be maintained at the new MRO facility.
Boeing has been expanding its Jacksonville workforce. The aerospace company opened the 23,000-square-foot Boeing Jacksonville Training Systems Center of Excellence at 6225 Lake Gray Blvd that Colbert said will employ 100 people.