Bombardier plans to invest $80 million in a new service center in Miami, doubling the size of its customer service capabilities in Florida.                                                                      

Bombardier plans to move its heavy maintenance operations in Fort Lauderdale to the new location, which will be large enough to handle the company’s Learjet, Challenger and Global aircraft – including the new Global 7500.

The 300,000-sq.-ft. facility will open in 2020 at Miami-Opa Locka Executive in Miami-Dade County.

It will perform scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, aircraft modifications, avionics installations and aircraft-on-ground support. The facility will serve Bombardier’s customer base in the U.S. and Latin America, the company said.

Once fully ramped up, the center will employ about 300 workers, nearly double its current Florida employment.

Bombardier will continue to support customers in Fort Lauderdale with a line maintenance station.

The company has talked about growing its Florida presence for several years and has been in conversations with Miami-Dade County officials for several months to obtain the right location, said Jean-Christophe Gallagher, Bombardier vice president and general manager of customer experience. “We’re very, very excited,” Gallagher said.

Opa Locka airport is home to more than 60 Bombardier aircraft and is growing, he said.

The service center will be one of the largest in the Bombardier network.

“This new facility will employ nearly 300 of our residents in high-paying jobs averaging $70,000 annually while also forging workforce partnerships with our local schools for continuing career opportunities,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez, lauding Bombardier for “grassroots development of the aerospace industry in our region.”

Bombardier is hiring technicians for the Miami operation and for its centers throughout its network, said Gallagher. Technicians will receive Bombardier’s Type Training Course for Mechanical and Avionics certification to provide services at its nine service centers worldwide.