The future is confidently taking flight in North Charleston, where thousands of Boeing South Carolina teammates are assembling the 787 Dreamliner, positioning the company to succeed in the competitive global market and cementing the state’s reputation as a center for the aerospace industry.
“In this building, our talented Boeing South Carolina teammates are going to assemble the finest, most technologically advanced commercial widebody airplane in history,” says Jack Jones, vice president and general manager of Boeing South Carolina. “Airline customers from around the world will come to the South Carolina low country to take delivery of their 787s, and we look forward to demonstrating what ‘Made with pride in South Carolina’ is all about.”
Boeing’s investment in the project – expected to exceed $870 million and create more than 4,000 direct jobs – establishes the Palmetto State as one of only three places in the world for the final assembly of widebody airliners. The 787 Dreamliner program is expected to create an increase of $6.14 billion in direct annual output in the state’s economy and spark creation of 15,000 direct and indirect jobs.
787 Dreamliner: From South Carolina to the World
The state’s favorable business environment, existing aerospace manufacturing facilities, infrastructure, ease of logistics and other factors encouraged the company to select South Carolina for its second 787 Dreamliner final-assembly facility. Boeing placed heavy emphasis on long-term competitiveness and ensuring a steady stream of deliveries for worldwide customers.
Existing aerospace companies included Boeing Charleston, which was established to perform fabrication, assembly and systems installation for 787 aft fuselage sections, and Global Aeronautica. A major supplier of subassemblies for the 787, Global Aeronautica was a joint venture between Vought Aircraft Industries and Alenia North America, a subsidiary of Italy's Alenia Aeronautica. Global Aeronautica now is wholly owned by Boeing.
South Carolina: Pro-Business Environment
Boeing officials cite South Carolina’s commitment to providing an environment where the company can succeed and continuously improve its competitiveness as a reason for the company’s expansion in the state.
“Our partnerships with state and local government and industry have made today possible,” Mario Cavazzoni, vice president and general manager of final assembly and delivery for Boeing South Carolina, says of the opening of the facility, which is about the size of 12 football fields and was completed six months ahead of schedule.
Locating the new 787 final assembly facility in South Carolina enables the company to build on the presence it has established in the state with Boeing Charleston and Global Aeronautica, says Jim Albaugh, president and CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes.
“Locating the second line in North Charleston will allow Boeing to successfully compete in the aerospace market and grow for the long-term benefit of many stakeholders,” he says.
Boeing announced another expansion in South Carolina even as it constructed the new 787 final assembly facility. Up to 150 employees are staffing Boeing Fabrication Interiors in North Charleston. Its proximity to the 787 facility will make the final assembly and delivery process even more efficient.
The 787 Dreamliner will be more efficient, quieter and have lower emissions than other airplanes while offering passengers greater comfort and the convenience of direct, nonstop flights between more cities. The 787 family of airplanes will carry 210 to 330 passengers on flights up to 8,500 nautical miles.