Spaceport Business Park is foundation for aerospace – Midland Reporter-Telegram

Editor’s note: This commentary follows Orbital Outfitters groundbreaking and the news of the creation of the Spaceport Business Park made last week.

Spaceport Business Park is coming to Midland.

While the announcement of the business park took a back seat to last week’s Orbital Outfitter groundbreaking, its impact could be the most significant step toward diversification we have seen in quite some time.

Spaceport Business Park, located at Midland International Air and Space Port, will start as the home of XCOR Aerospace and Orbital Outfitters, but expectations are that the spaceport will be an inviting location for other members of the nation’s aerospace industry. Keith Graf, director of the governor’s Aerospace, Aviation and Defense & Texas Military Preparedness Commission, said Midland will be “one of the premier sites in the world” when it comes to aerospace. The governor’s office has so much confidence in what will take place that it is giving Midland Spaceport Corp. $2 million to develop the area.

Part of that money will be applied to projects for XCOR, according to Robert Rendall, a Midland Development Corp. point man on projects such as XCOR and Orbital Outfitters. The rest of the money, Rendall said, will go toward the infrastructure the MDC and city will need for the business park.

“If we had not been able to receive the money from the state then we would have funded that money locally,” Rendall said.

Rendall said the goal is to create a “cluster industry,” one that starts with XCOR and Orbital Outfitters. It’s part of an economic diversification strategy whereby companies will attract other companies that support their efforts and add jobs.

“It is very much like the oil and gas industry is a cluster,” Rendall said.

‘Ask for the moon and reach it’

Economic diversification chatter usually follows a course opposite of the price …read more

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