Boeing plant could boost local economy

Myrtle Beach, SC - By A.J. Ross - bio | email

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Boeing's plans to build a second manufacturing plant in South Carolina has several Grand Strand businesses and leaders excited about the possible economic ripple effects.

Aviation experts at AvCraft, a Myrtle Beach-based airplane maintenance and repair company, say Boeing's investment in the Palmetto State could lead to several other big name companies doing the same.

"The State of South Carolina has been working very diligently to become an aerospace center, and announcements such as Boeing are really a catalyst," explained AvCraft GM Mike Hill. "This announcement will certainly have a big economic impact for the local Charleston area, but there's also the ability to build on that outside of Charleston."

Hill contends Charleston only has so much space to provide Boeing manufacturers and suppliers. And since Myrtle Beach is only a short distance away, he is confident some of these big businesses may soon make the Grand Strand their home.

"I think the aerospace park could certainly attract some supporting companies for Boeing," Hill said.

Leaders with the Myrtle Beach Regional Economic Development Corporation (MBREDC) say they are already hard at work trying to market the new aerospace park to Boeing suppliers.

"We are following every lead and being aggressive in following the Boeing story," said Bill Britton, the head of marketing for the MBREDC. "They have our brochures on the aviation and technology park, and we've answered additional questions that they have had, so we might get a couple visits in the near future."

The new Boeing plant is expected to be complete by next summer, and if everything goes according to plan, Grand Strand leaders and businesses say they are looking to a bright future ahead.

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