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Upcoming demolition work makes key industrial airport land shovel-ready

SAN ANTONIO--Port San Antonio will soon begin the demolition of several obsolete warehouses, dock-high concrete foundations and unused roads in the property’s heavy-industrial center. The clearing of the land is an essential step for the expansion of aerospace, manufacturing and other quality job-generating operations at the Port.

The 178-acre site is located next to Kelly Field, the Port’s industrial airport. The land is one of only three places in Texas ideally suited for the construction of hangars and workshops that can accommodate large aerospace facilities requiring direct runway access. It is also an ideal site for other industrial uses, including non-aerospace manufacturing operations. 

In addition to air access, the site also has robust logistics connectivity by truck. It is adjacent to a $60-million four-lane road extension--36th Street--completed in 2012 by the City of San Antonio. The new road provides direct access to Highway 90, which quickly links to Interstate Highways 10, 35 and 37. 

The demolition of five obsolete buildings totaling over 500,000 square feet and the preparation of the corresponding land was made possible thanks to $3.5 million in secured funding. Of that total $1.85 million was obtained through the City of San Antonio’s Economic Development Incentive Fund. In May, City Council approved a resolution dedicating the funds to the project. An additional $1.5 million was secured through a grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA). Port San Antonio will manage the project.

Marquee names at Port San Antonio include Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Chromalloy, StandardAero and GDC Technics.

“The upcoming work will make a big section of our property shovel-ready, which is to say, job-ready. It makes our offerings even more attractive as we continue to work with our partners to bring additional good employers to the region,” said Roland C. Mower, Port San Antonio President and CEO. “We greatly appreciate the confidence  the City of San Antonio and the U.S. Department of Commerce continue to place in our work as one of the region’s leading economic engines.”

“Port San Antonio keeps undergoing an important transformation as a growing and vibrant center of commerce for our region,” said San Antonio Councilmember Rey Saldaña, whose District 4 includes Kelly Field. “Removal of obsolete buildings and roads will go a long way toward enhancing one of our region’s prime pieces of industrial real estate and showcasing the great work that already takes place here.”

Spanning 1,900 acres that contain over 10 million square feet of active hangars, workshops, logistics and office facilities, Port San Antonio is one of the single-largest commercial sites in South Texas. It is already home to over 80 employers and 12,000 workers engaged in aerospace, manufacturing, logistics, Department of Defense and other private- and public-sector operations.

At Kelly Field, marquee names in aerospace – including Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Chromalloy, StandardAero and GDC Technics – support an array commercial and military aircraft. Services provided by those Port customers include airframe and engine maintenance, high-end completions and the installation of avionics and other sophisticated electronic components.

For several years, occupancy of industrial facilities at the Port has remained at about 95 percent, and air-served facilities are almost fully occupied. Future large expansions by aerospace and manufacturing will require new, custom-built facilities. The upcoming preparation of the airfield sites will therefore reduce development time and costs to accommodate industry growth.