Eclipse Aviation Makes Gains In Gainesville

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On Friday, Eclipse Aviation officially opened its Southeast Eclipse Service Center at the Gainesville-Alachua County Regional Airport in Florida. The 61,000-sq-ft complex, which is Part 145 compliant and fully operational, is the second Eclipse maintenance center to come online but is the first one outside of the company's headquarters in Albuquerque, N.M. "Today is a great day for Eclipse Aviation, the City of Gainesville and our customers in the Southeast," Eclipse COO Peg Billson noted during the ribbon-cutting ceremony. "The enthusiasm for the Eclipse 500 in this region has been incredible…[and] it is also an honor to be a part of the state of Florida's ongoing efforts to build a progressive aviation infrastructure that generates economic development and business growth for its communities." The new facility includes a 45,000-sq-ft hangar that can hold up to 12 Eclipse 500s at a time, a 10,800-sq-ft maintenance floor and a 5,400-sq-ft customer service area. Currently, there are about 20 employees at the Gainesville facility, though Eclipse plans to have 65 employees there by year-end. Technicians in this facility will be able to perform all Eclipse 500 scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, including work on the Eclipse 500's Pratt & Whitney Canada PW610F engines. Eclipse plans to open additional centers in Albany, N.Y., and Van Nuys, Calif., by year-end, with expansion into other regions planned later on.