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United Technologies Corp. And Pratt & Whitney Plan Second Expansion At Its West Palm Beach, Florida, Manufacturing Campus

Area Development Online News Desk (06/17/2014)
United Technologies Corp. recently opened Pratt & Whitney’s $63.7 million West Palm Beach, Florida, Engine Center. Company officials report the newly built facility is already slated for an additional $25 million upgrade, as part of a new manufacturing project.

Two years ago Louis Chênevert, United Technologies Chairman/CEO, first announced a $63.7 million expansion, with plans to create 230 jobs. The completed engine center includes a new state-of-the-art production facility that will support Pratt & Whitney’s ramp up for production of the PurePower PW1100G-JM engine for the Airbus A320neo aircraft and the F135 engine for the F-35 Lightning II fighter jet.

During the grand opening, Pratt & Whitney officials announced it will invest an additional $25 million in facility upgrades and equipment for its military Auxiliary Power Unit business, with plans to create 110 more jobs by the end of 2016.

“This state-of-the-art engine Assembly and Test Facility will play a key role supporting the production ramp-up of Pratt & Whitney’s next generation PurePower PW1100G-JM commercial engine and F135 military engine,” said Pratt & Whitney President Paul Adams.

The new 97,000-square-foot production facility was recently awarded LEED Gold designation. LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class environmentally friendly and sustainable building strategies and practices that conserve energy, reduce water use, improve indoor air quality, make better building material choices and drive innovation.

“This grand opening event and the news that Pratt & Whitney will again expand operations in Florida is a great boost for our aerospace and aviation industry,” said Secretary of Commerce and President/CEO of Enterprise Florida, Gray Swoope. “When Pratt & Whitney announced they would build jet engines in Florida, it marked the first time the company would do that outside of Connecticut. That initial project and this expansion show that Florida has the workforce and resources needed for aerospace leaders to succeed in the state.”

Jesse Panuccio, Executive Director of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity said, “Pratt & Whitney’s continued expansion in Palm Beach County is great news for the local economy and demonstrates the company’s confidence in Florida’s pro-growth business climate. With expansions like these, Florida’s economy is turning around and we are becoming the best state in the nation to live and work.”

Governor Rick Scott said, “In November 2012, we first announced Pratt & Whitney’s plans to expand in West Palm Beach and create 230 new jobs. Today, we are excited to announce the addition of 110 new jobs. As our economy continues to improve, more and more opportunities are available for Florida families. Our unemployment rate is down to 6.2 percent and Florida businesses have created more than 600,000 jobs in just over three years.Let’s keep working to build an opportunity economy in our state where business can continue to grow jobs.”

Lt. Gov. Lopez-Cantera said, “The opening of Pratt & Whitney’s West Palm Beach Engine Center is great news for families in West Palm Beach. The creation of 340 new jobs means more Floridians will have the opportunities they need to succeed and provide for their families. Governor Scott and I remain committed to building an opportunity economy in Florida so every Floridian who wants a job can get one.”

“Pratt & Whitney’s presence in Palm Beach County is significant and we value the company’s commitment to job creation and capital investment here,” said Palm Beach County Mayor, Priscilla A. Taylor. “Today’s announcement coincides with Palm Beach County’s economic growth.”

Kelly Smallridge, President/CEO of the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County said, “Pratt & Whitney’s increased footprint over the last several years underscores the fact that Palm Beach County is becoming a major hub for the relocation and expansion of aviation & aerospace companies.”

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