SAVANNAH, Ga., Aug 10, 2006 – Gulfstream Aerospace, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), will build a new Savannah Service and Support Center that is more than double the size of its current facility. The new center will meet the ongoing demand for business-jet aircraft support, maintenance and refurbishment. Gulfstream broke ground at the construction site today, the first step of a building project that will be entirely completed by the end of 2009.
The construction project will be completed in two phases. The first phase of construction, which will be completed by July 2007, includes the north hangar building, connector building, repair shops, a fuel farm, an engine run-up area, an employee parking lot and a cafeteria. Phase One comprises some 318,660 square feet.
The second phase of construction will be completed by the end of 2009. It includes the south hangar building, a second engine run-up area, additional repair shops and parking spaces. Phase Two comprises some 311,220 square feet.
The new Service and Support Center will be located on a 76.6-acre tract in the southwest quadrant of the Savannah-Hilton Head International Airport. It is part of Gulfstream's long-range facilities master plan announced in March. The $300 million, 7-year expansion will create up to 1,100 new jobs, a 25 percent increase from the current employment level of 4,300 employees. Gulfstream's Savannah facility will expand nearly 70 percent in size by 2012. The facility expansion will be completed in phases to minimize any effect on the business-jet manufacturer's core businesses – manufacturing and servicing business-jet aircraft.
"Gulfstream is committed to providing the highest possible level of service to our customers, and our decision to expand is a direct reflection of our ongoing investment in our people, our facilities, and our capabilities to meet customer demand for aircraft refurbishment and maintenance," said Larry Flynn, president, Product Support, Gulfstream. "Not only does this investment position us well for the future, but it also will help us better respond to the growth in our own customer base and the resulting in-service fleet."
Since 1959 when Gulfstream delivered its first aircraft model, the GI, more than 1,500 jets have been produced. Today, Gulfstream offers a fleet of six different business jets at various price and performance points.
In addition to Savannah, Gulfstream operates service centers in Long Beach, Calif.; Dallas; Appleton, Wis.; Brunswick, Ga.; and London, England. The service centers provide maintenance, overhaul, testing, inspections, equipment installations and refurbishment of Gulfstream business jets.
Gulfstream also manages six service centers under the General Dynamics Aviation Services banner. Located in Las Vegas; Dallas; Minneapolis; Appleton, Wis.; Westfield, Mass.; and West Palm Beach, Fla., these facilities service Gulfstream, Challenger, Learjet, Hawker and Falcon business jets.
Upon completion in 2009, the overall service center will be the largest maintenance facility in the world built specifically for business jets.
Gulfstream to expand its Savannah headquarters
Part of $500 million, seven-year plan