Governor Bush Dedicates New Lockheed Martin Research Building in Orlando
ORLANDO, FL, 11-NOV-06 --
Governor Jeb Bush dedicated a new Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) research building in a ceremony today at the company’s Sand Lake Road facility in Orlando. The new building, part of a more than $175 million expansion effort, offers 250,000-square-feet of additional research and technology space, to sustain the workforce and attract new talent.
“This is a great day for Florida’s $44 billion defense industry and our state’s proud tradition of supplying our nation’s men and women in the Armed Forces with the very best in equipment and services,” said Governor Bush. “Over the years, Lockheed Martin has contributed significant high-skill employment to our growing spectrum of job and business opportunities in the Sunshine State – and we thank the company for its further investment in Florida.”
The company’s capital investment, which includes new manufacturing and research and development equipment, enables current and future programs such as the Medium Extended Air Defense System, JASSM™, Sniper® Advanced Targeting Pod, Joint Common Missile and Hellfire® missile.
“The dedication of the new research and development building marks the 50th anniversary of our locating and investing in Central Florida and signals our commitment to continue this successful relationship with the Orlando community,” said James F. Berry, president of Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “Our continued commitment to research and development technology to protect our country is exemplified in the dedication of this new building. It will help provide the environment capable to retain the best and brightest engineers in the business.”
With MFC headquarters in Grand Prairie, Texas, Lockheed Martin’s Missiles and Fire Control business unit at the Sand Lake Road, Orlando location, was established in 1956 and currently employs more than 4,000 workers.
“Lockheed Martin is a wonderful community partner that produces technology essential to our nations’ security,” said Orange County Mayor Richard Crotty. “We are honored to have this great company here in Central Florida and will continue to work with them to see that we are as helpful as we can be to ensure their continued growth. High-value jobs are what Lockheed Martin represents, and we support and encourage this for the benefit of our community.”
“This facility was the foundation and catalyst behind the growth of our region’s high-tech sector. That makes this expansion extremely significant, ensuring that a next generation of Lockheed Martin technology will be developed and manufactured in our region,” said Ray Gilley, president and CEO of the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission. “This company’s growth not only results in the creation and retention of high-wage jobs and a considerable capital investment, but also makes a statement that Metro Orlando’s high tech future is extremely bright.”
Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services.
Florida competed on this economic development project with Lockheed Martin’s other Missiles and Fire Control sites throughout the country, as well as the group’s headquarters in Grand Prairie, Texas.
Governor Bush has made diversifying Florida’s economy a top priority for his second term in office, placing particular emphasis on fostering the development of emerging technologies. From such emphasis has come the successful effort to bring the expansions of The Scripps Research Institute, The Burnham Institute and Torrey Pines into Florida. Under the leadership of Governor Bush, Florida has provided $19.1 billion in state and local tax relief through 2006-07, increased state reserves by more than 500 percent, and developed into a long-term national leader in job creation. With virtually no interruption, Florida has maintained its number one ranking in job growth for more than 40 consecutive months. According to the American Electronics Association, Florida leads the Southeast and ranks fourth nationally in high-tech employment. New measures passed by the Florida Legislature to enhance Florida’s innovation economy include $200 million to create the Florida Innovation Incentive Fund to bring large scale business or research projects to the state, $50 million for a World Class Scholars Program and a Centers of Excellence program to enhance upon our innovation infrastructure, $45 million to expand Florida’s Quick Action Closing Fund and $43 million to secure Florida’s position as a leader in the Space and Aeronautics industry.
For more information on Governor Bush’s economic development initiatives, please visit www.myflorida.com