Bell Aero Invests in Local Community

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A major construction project in Ozark could mean more revenue not only for the city, but the entire Wiregrass community.

Last October, News 4 told you about a three-phase expansion project for Bell Aero in Ozark.

That project, which has already created 150 new jobs for the area, will soon bring in even more money, thanks to a local business.

Crews are now working to level off what will become Bell Aero's newest operation hangar.

Bell Aero awarded local company, Glenn Construction the contract bids.

"It's just an honor to be a part of this process and a part of the economic development of Ozark with Bell Aero investing in this area and our opportunity of building it," says Janet Wolfe, Glenn Construction.

The first phase is expected to take seven months to complete.

Glenn Construction has hired 12 major sub-contractors and suppliers, all located close to home and nine are coming from Ozark and the surrounding area.

And, with a project as large as this one, contractors say more help will be needed.

Some have already hired more workers. They even gave us a shot at running one of the machines.

But besides the help, the project team says the money will remain locally, because it's a local contractor.

"The majority would go back to wherever that contractor was from. [With the] sub-contractor being this close to Georgia and Florida, [they] would probably have come from these areas, too. I think it's a good thing for a local contractor to be successful on this bid," says Mike Wolfe, Glenn Construction.

"It's going to help everybody, and we're delighted it happened. It's good to keep things in town," says Ozark Mayor Bob Bunting.

The project was bid for about $6 million dollars.

It’s important to note, 75-percent of that $6 million dollars is what will stay locally, 90-percent in Alabama.

The project is being paid for by Bell Aero and is not a part of the Blackwell Field's Airport expansion project.

Phases two and three are expected to cost Bell Aero about $20 to $25 million dollars.

Those phases are set to bring an additional 200 jobs to Ozark.

But, according to Bell Aero, it may take up to eight years to complete.