Airport open house this week

Published 12:10 am Sunday, March 29, 2009

Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford absolutely makes no attempt to hide his excitement about the new Troy Airport Training and Operation Center, which will be open to the public during open house at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

“The new training and operation center at the Troy Municipal Airport is one of the most important developments that we’ve had in the city for some time,”

Lunsford said. “It has given a new face to the city – a new entrance to fly into the community, and that is of the utmost importance.”

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Lunsford said the city of Brundidge already has been positively impacted by the new facility.

“A company flew in on short notice and met with officials from Brundidge at the airport and got back on the plane and left,” Lunsford said. “It was a real positive experience.”

The Troy Airport Training and Operation Center also will provide training capabilities for local industries and businesses.

“I’m confident that we’ll see many local industries and businesses take advantage of the training capabilities there. The facility is equipped with video conferencing and advanced technology training aids to support skills training to our existing industries as well as Fort Rucker Army personnel that use our airport.”

Those who attend the open house will have an opportunity to view a demonstration of an actual teleconference between a national business and someone from the state government.

“This will be a demonstration of the technology that is available that has not been available here before,” Lunsford said. “A tremendous amount of interest has been expressed by KW Plastics, Sikorsky and the Wal-Mart DC. We anticipate that the facility will be booked a lot of the time for training once businesses and industries realize the capabilities that we have for all types of training.”

Troy is expanding the airport runway and infrastructure to accommodate the needs of business and industry.

“With Troy University having a global presence, more and more business leaders from around the world are visiting our city,” Lunsford said. “This facility will also provide these international businesses a very favorable first impression of Troy when they fly into our airport.”

Sikorsky Aircraft is currently in the process of doubling its labor force and has plans to continue expanding the Troy facility and will be using the training facility.

The Troy Airport Training and Operation Center will provide high tech video conference training capabilities to companies including KW Plastics, HB&G and others that have multiple locations throughout the United States.

The facility will accommodate on-site training for local high school students who are interested in aviation-related careers through a program with the Aviation School in Ozark.

“This is a much needed facility that is critical to the future economic development growth of Troy and Pike County,” said President of the Pike County Economic Development Center Marsha Gaylard.