American Addition: The New Hangar Will Be Used to Upgrade the Airline's Jets

During the next few weeks, American Airlines workers will be moving equipment and tooling into the facility while contractors finish interior offices, break rooms and bathrooms.

Mechanics are expected to begin maintaining, repairing and overhauling airplanes in the fabric-covered hangar in November, American executives said.

"We're going to have two (Boeing) 757 MAUI lines in the new hangar by the end of the year," said Carmine Romano, American's senior vice president of maintenance and engineering. "It gives us two bays for widebodies that we would not otherwise be able to do in Tulsa and (facilities for) close to 200 people, including production supervisors."

American's MAUI — Mid-life Avionics Upgrade Initiative — on its 124-aircraft 757 fleet should occupy the new hangar through 2011, Romano said.

American mechanics in the MAUI program are overhauling the 757's computers, flight control systems, cockpit liquid crystal display monitors and flight recorders to increase system capacity and capabilities.

Hangar No. 80, as American's new facility has been named by the Tulsa Airport Authority, is 370 feet long, 220 feet wide, with a ceiling height of 70 feet. Its door opening is 190 feet wide by 66 feet high.

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