Commercial Jet means business. Less than one month after announcing plans to open a $12 million facility at Dothan Regional Airport, it lands a major client: Aeronautical Engineers Inc.
“Oh, it’s huge. It’s a big deal for Dothan and it’s a big thing for the state of Alabama as well,” said Art Morris, Dothan’s Airport Director.
The company specializes in cargo-door conversions. Engineers design doors that revamp passenger planes into cargo planes.
"They actually cut a section out, manufacture a door, put the door in, and then the aircraft can be used as either as a passenger aircraft or a cargo aircraft,” Morris explained.
This type of aircraft is in high demand because the company has a patent for these doors. They need maintenance companies—such as Commercial Jet—to do the work. This operation will be the largest passenger-to-cargo conversion facility in the world
“There is a huge market for these types of conversions, particularly right now. The South American market is just booming for these types of aircraft. There's a big shortage, worldwide shortage, of these aircrafts so that means they're going to have to bring them to Dothan to get the conversions done,” said Morris.
Within the next few years, the Dothan Facility will employ several hundred aircraft technicians.