By Jerry Underwood
Huntsville-based Acquisition Integration, a distribution, logistics and services company serving the commercial and military aerospace and vehicles industries, plans to establish a maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) operation at Pryor Field Regional Airport.
Acquisition Integration (AI) has developed a four-phase plan to build 170,000 square feet of hangar and office space, calling for an investment of nearly $30 million and the creation of around 250 jobs, according to the Pryor Field Airport Authority.
“Acquisition Integration is happy to be involved in the long-term plans at Pryor Field. We look forward to bringing a capability to Pryor Field that will benefit both the aviation world and the local workforce,” CEO Dave Bristol said.
“We believe that it will support the expected growth in North Alabama and thank the local community for its support in helping us build this capability.”
“We are pleased to have AI in our community and look forward to working with them,” said Bethany Shockney, CEO of the Limestone Economic Development Authority. “Their specialization in aviation is a great addition to our industry base and we are working on adding more companies with similar activities.”
Goodwyn Mills Cawood (GMC), Pryor Field’s airport engineer and planning consultant, recently worked with the Authority to develop an airport master plan, which provided a plan to separate corporate/transient and cargo operations from general aviation operations.
This plan allowed the airport to allocate nearly 85 acres of existing airport property for MRO, like that being developed by AI.
The Airport Authority is working with GMC on several other projects to support AI’s MRO operations, as well as future developments on this property designated for long-term ground lease opportunities.
“Everything we do is a partnership. It takes committed partners, such as the cities of Decatur and Athens, Limestone and Morgan counties, as well as their economic development teams, the FAA, and the State of Alabama, to bring these opportunities to fruition,” Pryor Field Airport Manager Adam Fox said.
The project is being assisted through grants totaling $2 million from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs and the Appalachian Regional Commission.
In addition, the Airport is working to secure grant funding for a new taxiway project, as well as funding for other projects identified through development of the airport master plan.
“Our master plan has allowed us to market sections of the airport for long-term ground leases that weren’t previously dedicated for development,” Airport Authority Chairman Nathan Fowler said. “Pryor Field is growing and positioned for many more economic development opportunities in the future.”
Located near Decatur, Pryor Field Regional Airport is one of the busiest general aviation airports in Alabama, serving the needs of national, corporate and private aircraft.
“It is exciting to have Acquisition Integration commit to constructing a new facility that will create 250 high-paying jobs,” said Jeremy Nails, CEO of the Morgan County Economic Development Association. “Pryor Field is a first-class airport, and this addition will certainly enhance and complement their long-range improvement plans.”
The Airport Authority said it approved a 25-year lease with a 10-year option for AI’s MRO project earlier this month.