Construction of Airbus’ A320 family assembly line in Mobile, Ala., officially began Monday with a groundbreaking ceremony at the Mobile Brookley Aeroplex.
The new assembly line, which is the company’s first production facility in the U.S., will be located at the aeroplex and will facilitate assembly of A319, A320 (pictured above) and A321 aircraft. It will employ as many as 1,000 high-skilled workers.
Airbus is an EADS company, and EADS CEO Tom Enders helped lead the celebrations. More than 1,000 people including many EADS and other Airbus executives, government and industry officials and local community members attended the event.
“Our customers need more aircraft that cut fuel burn, emissions and operating costs,” president and CEO Fabrice Brégier said at the ceremony. “With this assembly line we will be able to meet our customers’ needs at their doorstep, in addition to the worldwide demand for these efficient aircraft. When this assembly line opens, we will be the only one to assemble aircraft in Asia, the Americas and Europe.”
Major construction of the facility will begin this summer. Aircraft assembly is planned to begin in 2015, with first delivery of a Mobile-assembled aircraft in 2016.
At full production, the assembly line and associated facilities will produce up to four aircraft per month.