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Inside the cockpit of an Airbus A220. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Fabian Behr)

Airbus Reaches A220 Milestone With New U.S. Production Facility

Airbus’ U.S. production capabilities have begun a new chapter following the inauguration of the newly completed 270,000-square-foot hangar designed to host the final assembly line of the A220 commercial aircraft. This facility, situated in Mobile, Alabama consists of five primary assembly areas where the different components of the airframe will come together for the final aircraft product. In addition, Airbus will be able to produce both the A220-100 and A220-300 variants. 

Since Airbus’ production team decided to lay out the blueprints for this facility which led this inauguration, this has allowed the major aircraft manufacturer to mark another special occasion of welcoming JetBlue as a new A220 customer.  JetBlue will become the second U.S. air carrier after Delta to receive a U.S. built A220, which is a move in a positive direction, especially during this difficult time period for the aviation industry.

Paul Gaskell, president of A220 USA and leader of the A220 program in Mobile, is eager to welcome the first components of the assembly line, which is destined to become an A220 for the New York-based carrier.

“The team is excited to start working in their new facility and to welcome a new customer,” Gaskell said. “It’s a strong endorsement from JetBlue in this challenging time.”

The opening of this new facility signifies Airbus’ continued efforts to be a significant global aircraft manufacturer. Airbus had already been producing the A220 in Mobile, Alabama in August 2019. However, the production for the A220s occurred in an existing final assembly line hangar constructed for producing U.S.-built A320 aircraft variants.  As a result,  the beginning of Airbus’ new chapter of dedication towards assembling the A220 at this new production site will double the manufacturing operations in Alabama. 

Airbus’ expedition towards an expanded U.S. industrial footprint will allow the company to further progress its efforts to remain a prime aspect of aircraft manufacturing in not just the U.S. but North America. Mobile is the second assembly site for the A220s, as the A220’s predominant facility and program headquarters is located in Mirabel, Canada, where engineering support and mechanical expertise are also located.

This will also allow Airbus to be a more competitive aircraft manufacturer in the U.S. where Boeing is based and a dominant choice for U.S. airlines. Furthermore, the A220 will become a significant alternative for airlines where they can use the aircraft on domestic routes across the U.S. This will reaffirm the fact that Airbus can remain an active part of the American aviation sector. 

“The expansion of our commercial aircraft production in Mobile – from the A320 Family to the A220 – further solidifies Airbus’ standing as a truly global aircraft manufacturer, and confirms that Airbus remains an important part of the American manufacturing landscape,” Gaskell said.

Author

  • Benjamin has had a love for aviation since a young age, growing up in Tampa with a strong interest in airplane models and playing with them. When he moved to the Washington, D.C. area, Benjamin took part in aviation photography for a couple of years at Gravelly Point and Dulles Airport, before dedicating planespotting to only when he traveled to the other airports. He is an avid, world traveler, having been able to reach 32 countries, yearning to explore and understand more cultures soon. Currently, Benjamin is an Air Transporation Management student at Arizona State University. He hopes to enter the airline industry to improve the passenger experience and loyalty programs while keeping up to how technology is being integrated into airports.

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