John R. Simon, President & CEO of Stavatti Niagara Ltd., conducted a tour through the company’s newly-acquired, huge 47,000 sq ft aircraft hangar where the company will be bringing aircraft manufacturing back to the Empire State of New York. On tour was Town of Niagara Supervisor Lee Wallace, New York State Assemblyman Angelo Morinello, and Niagara Falls Mayor Robert Restaino. Wallace had previously stated that the former U.S. Army Reserve Center had largely been underutilized for many years.
After the tour, he said, “It’s a very exciting project. The Town of Niagara, when we first entered into the agreement with the Department of Defense to purchase this facility, back in 2005, we envisioned something of great need and great fortune to the town, and to the county. But never dreamed that it would be something like this. It will change the face of, not only the Town of Niagara, but of Niagara County and will create thousands of jobs. Just a win-win for everyone.”
Those “thousands of jobs” of which Wallace spoke includes not only Stavatti jobs, but also the spin-off jobs that such projects always create. Stavatti’s 19.8-acre site will serve as its prototype development, production and aircraft Low Rate Initial Production center [rate, as in volume].
Stavatti anticipates the employment of nearly 600 aerospace engineering, development and manufacturing professionals at the site within the next 5 years. Anticipated key programs are next-generation Stavatti military, commercial, and general aviation aircraft that include the SM-27 Machete (turboprop), SM-28 Machete (turbofan), SM-31 Stiletto, SM-100 twin engine intermodal transport and SM-150 personal air vehicle.
After the tour, Niagara Falls Mayor Robert Restaino said, “It’s an incredible and impressive building.” He went on to say that he was impressed with the level of detail that was shared with him during the tour; and closed out by saying, “I’m excited about the project.”
It was obviously a feather in the hat of 145th NYSA District Assemblyman Morinello that the project came to his district after an extensive 15-month review of responses from over 30 US States and 3 Canadian Provinces, Stavatti down-selected the former USARC facility in June 2020 and started acquisition.
“It is extremely exciting that Stavatti has chosen the former Army Reserve Center … for their headquarters and manufacturing facilities,” Morinello said. “Our area is famous for airplane development and building, and Stavatti will carry on that proud tradition our area is known for. This project will benefit all of western NY.”
Simon says that he welcomes opportunities to give other such tours to its stakeholder representatives.