Construction underway for GKN Aerospace, plans to bring 170 jobs to Bay County

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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Construction is underway for the new GKN Aerospace facility at Venture Crossings, located next to the Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport.

The industrial center will be the location of 170 new jobs according to the Bay Economic Development Alliance.

County leaders say it is a step in the right direction.

"We have the tourism, we have the military and now we'll have the manufacturing, so the three legged stool will have a lot more balance in our economics around here," said Bay County Commissioner Philip "Griff" Griffitts.

The new jobs include management level careers, entry-level general assembly and manufacturing positions, paying an average of $63,000 a year.

EDA President Becca Hardin says this will also have an impact on local colleges.

"A lot of the things that they're going to be bringing to Bay County involve 3-D and additive manufacturing technology, that's why our local colleges are so important, because as they bring that innovation here. We'll be implementing training programs around additive manufacturing so that we're prepared with the workforce to grow with them as they grow," Hardin said.

GKN is one of the world's largest independent first tier suppliers to the international aviation industry. The company operates in 60 locations around the world, but this is the first facility in Florida.

"We're so excited to have GKN Aerospace commit to coming to our community, it's a game changer for Bay County," Hardin said.

Those interested in working at the Bay County GKN plant can apply online at EmployFlorida.com and send their résumé to customerservice@careersourcegc.com.