West Star Plans 'Significant Expansion' at Three Sites

 - December 8, 2021, 9:52 AM
Each of West Star Aviation's expansion sites will receive 40,000 sq ft or more of additional hangar space under a plan announced by the MRO provider. (Photo: West Star Aviation)

West Star Aviation is planning expansion projects at three of its four primary MRO facilities that will add more than a quarter-million square feet of space at its sites in East Alton, Illinois; Grand Junction, Colorado; and Chattanooga, Tennessee.

In East Alton, West Star looks to add a 40,000-sq-ft general-use hangar and a 48,000-sq-ft paint shop and hangar, the latter of which is expected to “significantly increase” the company’s paint capacity there. With the additional facilities, West Star’s footprint in East Alton is expected to comprise more than 400,000 sq ft of offices, hangars, and shops, with another 200,000 sq ft of ramp space.

The company’s Grand Junction operation also will see the addition of a 40,000-sq-ft hangar as well as 35,000 sq ft of shop and office space. An enlarged shop will include more room for interiors, a complete composite shop, and a tool room to accommodate work on larger aircraft. Slated for completion in 2023, the project will increase West Star's Grand Junction presence to 379,000 sq ft.

And in Chattanooga, West Star will add a 40,000-sq-ft hangar, 17,000 more square feet of shop and support space, and another 20,000-sq-ft hangar that it will lease from the airport. The Chattanooga expansion will bring the company’s total square footage there to 266,000 sq ft.

A West Star spokeswoman told AIN the expansion projects are in the planning phase and are expected to be formalized in early 2022. The projects—some of which could overlap— are expected to kick off first at the Chattanooga site, followed by Grand Junction, and then East Alton, she added.

“West Star has been one of the fastest-growing business MROs for the past 20 years,” said CEO Jim Rankin. “This expansion plan is our most aggressive investment in our future to date. These expansion projects will ensure West Star Aviation will be well-positioned to meet customer needs for the next five years and beyond.”