Airbus Groundbreaking in Mobile

Airbus Groundbreaking in Mobile

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Today, ground will be broken on a $600 million dollar facility at Brookley where Airbus will build airplanes.  A320 aircraft will be built in Mobile.

"This is a great day for Mobile and all of the State of Alabama," said Alabama Governor Robert Bentley. "Today is a major milestone. This is a groundbreaking day. Not just for Airbus but for the entire community."

Thousands of people will be hired during the construction phase of the facility and the plant is expected to employ about 1,000 people when it is operational.

"It's a great day for Airbus. It's part of a strategy we've had for a long time," said Allon McArtor, Chairman of Airbus Americas, Inc. "We're delighted to have the A320 assembly line here."

"I can assure you that Airbus did not make a stupid decision," said Win Hallett with the Mobile Chamber of Commerce during the ceremony. "They made a very smart decision."

"The one thing that was always there was a commitment by Airbus EADS to build airplanes in the U.S, and more specifically Mobile, Alabama," said Mobile Mayor Sam Jones while speaking at the podium. "Our future and Airbus' future are now tied together, and we are extremely proud of that."

Plane assembly is scheduled to begin in 2015, with the first finished aircraft expected to come off the assembly line in 2016.

"Jet Blue will be the first customer," said City Council Member GIna Gregory in a Live interview with News 5s Bill Riales. "It is very exciting to have this here and to be a part of it."

Gregory was one of several Mobile City leaders who took a trip to Hamburg, Germany to tour the Airbus facilities there. "It was truly a great trip and a wealth of knowledge."

Gregory is convinced that Airbus and Alabama will be a successful partnership. "I have no doubt that we have what it takes to put these airplanes together...We have the people here to provide the force that is needed."

News 5 will have complete coverage of today's ceremonies.

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