Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Aviation good and bad news

Mesa continues its rollercoaster of news and jobs - especially when it comes to aviation. First, a new type of helicopter produced by Boeing may bring more jobs and manufacturing to Falcon field. This would help diversify Mesa's current plant which is pretty much dependent on the Apache helicopter.

However, this good news is tempered by the fact that Gateway Airport is running a $1.8 million shortfall. Despite all of the good news coming out of Gateway and all of the exciting opportunities, vacancy is still 40% (they like to say 60% occupancy), which is down from a paltry 4% in 2007. What it comes down to is the loss of Boeing at Gateway, which appears to be unrelated to their work at Falcon.

These numbers are slightly deceiving, because they would recover 20% with the leasing of one hangar, but the reality is, that times are still tough, even for the places that are likely to be on the cutting edge of our recovery. It does show, that our economy, while likely to have reached the bottom, is going to have a rocky return to prosperity. In the meantime, we must celebrate our steps forward and hope they outweigh our setbacks along the way.

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