Gulfstream Aerospace yesterday announced plans for a $500 million, seven-year expansion project at its Savannah headquarters “to ensure that the company is well positioned to meet future demand for business jets and support services.” The aircraft manufacturer entered into a 50-year lease with the Savannah Airport Commission to build additional facilities on 159 acres of airport land.
Discussing the recession and predictions of a business aviation industry recovery, Hawker Beechcraft chairman and CEO Bill Boisture recently told AIN there have been some positive signals, including an increase in flight hours and revenue from service and parts sales. But he also sounded a note of caution.
Million Air Dallas held a groundbreaking ceremony on October 25 for an expansion of its Addison Airport FBO complex. Plans call for a new hangar, FBO terminal and ramp to open in next year’s second quarter. The new 40,000-sq-ft hangar will accommodate Gulfstream’s new G650. The $4 million addition was necessary because Million Air Dallas’s charter fleet, which now numbers 20 aircraft, is growing.
The 63rd edition of the National Business Aviation Association Convention & Exhibition exceeded the expectations of attendees and exhibitors alike, registering 24,206 attendees for the three-day event–an increase of more than 5 percent over attendance last year.
In the weeks before last month’s NBAA Convention, industry speculation about whether and how it would compete with the G650 forced Bombardier to partially reveal its hand sooner than it had intended, when on September 30 it admitted that the Global line of ultra-long-range business jets would be expanding.
WinAir of Taiwan announced at the NBAA Convention that it will launch a charter and aircraft management service in Taipei, Taiwan, on October 29. It will be the country's first such service. WinAir, which began as a private flight department, operates two U.S.-registered aircraft, a Gulfstream IV and a G450. The company recently took delivery of a G550 that was the first business jet to receive Taiwanese registration.
FlightSafety International (Booth No. 1227 and 1327) is marking a year of advances at NBAA, capped by the recent completion of construction of the first Gulfstream G650 flight simulator.
Gulfstream Aerospace (Booth No. 2043) has been able to “proactively manage our business to respond to market realities,” said company president Joe Lombardo. “When you consider today’s market realities, we’re doing relatively well.”
Describing the cabin of Gulfstream's new G650, senior v-p of programs, engineering and test Pres Henne said it began with a sketch of a cup holder and a single window. "That simple drawing led to an aircraft interior where form follows function."