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Paris Air Show

Alabama cities look for aerospace growth at Paris Air Show

PARIS – With Alabama emerging as the next hub of passenger jet assembly, officials from cities as different as Birmingham and Enterprise traveled to this week’s Paris Air Show to position their communities for potential growth in the aerospace sector.

Steve Pelham, chief of staff to Alabama Lt. Governor Kay Ivey, remembers the arc of growth for the state’s auto industry, which was essentially non-existent 20 years ago. In 2015, Alabama three automakers are poised to produce a record 1 million-plus vehicles, making the state a production powerhouse in the global industry.

“We’re headed in that same direction with the aerospace industry, not only with Airbus but also with Boeing and the continued growth of Fort Rucker and the important role it plays,” Pelham said. “You mix all that up, and Alabama is the place to be if you are in the aerospace business.”

Mobile is starting to feel the halo effects of Airbus’ decision to locate its first North American aircraft assembly line in Alabama. During the air show, three aerospace companies announced they planned to establish facilities at Mobile Aeroplex, the home of Airbus’ new $600 million A320 family production center.

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