$4.5 Million Grant to Fund New Research Park at Presque Isle Airport
The U.S. Commerce Department is awarding a $4.5 million grant to the city of Presque Isle for construction of a new aerospace research park at the Presque Isle International Airport, along with an access road and parking lot.
This project is anticipated to create or retain 140 jobs through the expansion of an aerospace industry tenant already at the airport, according to a news release from the Commerce Department. The Economic Development Administration’s investment will be combined with $1.1 million in local funds which is expected to generate an estimated $30 million in private investment.
The funding will help preserve 15 current positions and create a minimum of 126 new jobs, according to Kim Smith, Resource Development and Public Information Officer for the City of Presque Isle. The current aerospace company, located in a hangar at the Presque Isle Airport, would be the first in the new research park.
“The Economic Development Administration is pleased to support Presque Isle as it works to diversify and grow the region’s economy,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Castillo. “The construction supported by this EDA investment will allow an existing aerospace industry tenant to expand business operations and create good-paying, quality jobs in the region.”
The state-of-the-art facility aims to promote recruitment of highly educated individuals, and introduce students at area high schools and the Maine School of Science and Mathematics to the many opportunities of STEM research and related fields, according to Maine's Congressional Delegation.
“We welcome this investment at Presque Isle International Airport, which will help sustain and create good-paying jobs at the Research Park, enable existing companies to grow, and attract new business activity,” said Senator Susan Collins, Senator Angus King, and Congressman Jared Golden in a joint statement.
More details are likely to be revealed in the coming weeks and months concerning the scope and timetable for the project.