Groundbreaking ceremony celebrates Leonardo Helicopters’ move to Milton

Posted on August 4, 2020 by Staff reports

Santa Rosa County announced in January that Leonard Helicopters would be coming to Whiting Aviation Park adjacent to NAS Whiting Field, and the county’s economic development office plans to host a groundbreaking ceremony tomorrow for a temporary hangar for the company at Peter Prince Airport in East Milton.

“This hangar is just the first step in bringing even more high paying jobs to Santa Rosa County,” said Florida Senator Doug Broxson, “I want to thank the County and Leonardo, for making this great success happen.”

This new hangar will initially serve as an interim facility for Leonardo during the construction of their permanent facility at Whiting Aviation Park. Leonardo will use both locations to support their contract with the US Navy to deliver 130 new training helicopters to Whiting Field.

According to a news release by Broxson’s office, a local presence in Santa Rosa County will allow Leonardo to provide a higher level of customer support to the Navy. Although Leonardo will be the first tenant in the hangar, the long-term use will be as a recruitment tool to lure other aviation companies and build on the area’s growth within the aviation industry.

The project will employ 40 to 50 new employees at the support center. They will service the final fleet of 130 aircrafts and continue the mission of training all helicopter pilots for the US Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard in Santa Rosa County.

Following is a link to a story about the original announcement back in January: