Boeing Company announced today that if it wins a national competition to produce the T-X Air Force training jet, their employees would assemble the aircraft here in St. Louis. This decision to build the aircraft in St. Louis further supports the St. Louis region’s leadership in modern aviation innovation and aerospace manufacturing.
This is a huge deal for St. Louis. The contract would keep the St. Louis Boeing assembly line open and support 1,800 jobs. The initial contract includes 350 airplanes, with a potential for additional units as more of the U.S. military’s planes age into retirement. The U.S. Air Force is expected to award the estimated $16 billion contract late 2017. The St. Louis workforce will be prepared; Boeing has partnered with St. Louis Community College for an assembly mechanic training program for other aircraft that has already led to over 400 jobs in St. Louis.
Boeing, the St. Louis Regional Chamber, Missouri Governor Eric Greitens, Missouri Senators Claire McCaskill and Roy Blunt, Congressmen William “Lacy” Clay and Ann Wagner, and many other economic development and community leaders from both Illinois and Missouri gathered to celebrate Boeing’s decision to base its T-X operations here in our region. In this day and age, it is rare to see everyone come together for a common purpose, even for something as important as jobs and economic growth. This was truly a regional effort to help secure St. Louis’ future in aerospace manufacturing and help us become a more prosperous future.
We need to see more of these innovative, high-tech, St. Louis-designed and built aircraft flying over our skies. Let’s get it done.