According to Geoff Myrick, the new North American COO for Dublin, Ireland-based MAAS Aviation, some $13 million was invested in the company’s recently opened single-hangar, twin-bay, environmentally controlled maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) industrial facility at the Brookley Aeroplex.

The 80,000-square-foot paint shop is configured to support dual lines of narrow-body aircraft as a vendor for the Airbus A321 line, manufactured in Mobile. The new paint shop utilizes MAAS Aviation’s proprietary systems in the areas of building management, aircraft docking and quality management.

Onsite capabilities include chemical stripping, sanding and external aircraft repainting, production of customer livery spray masks, decals, technical lettering and mandatory markings, and engineering and maintenance support in cooperation with local partner VT Mobile Aerospace Engineering.

Myrick’s duties will include the oversight of quality and production, organizational management, sales and customer relationship development for MAAS.

“Airbus and VT Mobile Aerospace Engineering have been vital partners for MAAS Aviation, and we want to continue to build on the foundational relationships we have established,” he said.

A Fairhope native and current resident, Myrick graduated from the University of Alabama with a bachelor’s degree in marketing. He later picked up an MBA from the University of South Alabama while moving up the ladder in his aviation career. Prior to joining MAAS, Myrick served as vice president of sales for Certified Aviation Services LLC.

MAAS Aviation Brookley successfully delivered 19 completed original equipment manufacturer (OEM) aircraft in 2016, a number that reportedly will increase significantly in 2017 because of increases in Airbus manufacturing output and capacity arising from the new MRO facility. Once at full capacity, the company projects its United States operations will account for about half of its business.

The multinational firm currently operates facilities in Maastricht and Woensdrecht in The Netherlands; Hamburg, Germany; and Mobile, bringing the total number of painting facilities globally to eight.

According to Myrick, the local site now employs 52 full-time workers. Twenty-four are local hires sourced as a direct result of the new MRO facility, illustrating first-hand the “Airbus effect” moving into 2017. Mobile Works and Bishop State were heavily involved in the recruiting, interviewing and training process for MAAS Aviation. Two classes of 12 were trained for 12 weeks at Bishop State prior to travel to Europe for an additional four to eight weeks of hands-on training.

MAAS Aviation has defined, formal, in-house training programs and currently employs more than 100 skilled paint technicians globally. To date, the company has painted 3,600 aircraft of all types and is an Airbus OEM-qualified tier 1 supplier worldwide. The company is also certified to EN 9100 Revision C aerospace quality standards and maintains ISO 9001 and ISO14001 certifications.

Commercial real estate moves
White-Spunner Construction is actively completing 154,000 square feet of retail and dining space for the first phase of OWA, a new entertainment project in Foley recently announced by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. White-Spunner Construction’s role in the first phase of the project will focus on retail shops and restaurants. 

The first phase of the more than $500 million project is set to be complete this summer and is expected to cost approximately $240 million. Future plans for other phases of OWA call for a water park, additional hotels and a resort-level RV park. 

When completed, the development is expected to generate nearly 3,500 jobs (both direct and indirect) and bring in an additional one million visitors a year to the area. Located just off the Foley Beach Express and County Road 20, OWA is nine miles from Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.

Plans call for the development to include three themed districts offering shopping, dining and other entertainment for all ages. The location is near the city of Foley’s nearly complete sports tourism complex with 16 multipurpose fields. A 90,000-square-foot event center will make it even more appealing to traveling sports teams and families.

The 8,800-square-foot historic Hannah Houses, located at the corner of N. Conception and Saint Louis streets inside the De Tonti Square Historic District, were recently acquired by Lafayette Land Co. Inc., according to Bob Isakson, company president and project program manager. The properties are directly across from the New Federal Courthouse and adjacent to the new Automobile Alley Historic District.

Lafayette Land plans to restore the buildings toward the end of this year and offer them for lease as offices and residential spaces. Heather Isakson Huffman with NAI-Mobile is leasing manager on the project. For more information, contact Lafayette Land Co.

Guggenheim Partners has purchased 1.63 acres at 24151 Perdido Beach Blvd. in Orange Beach, adjacent to the Ruby Slipper Café. Construction is underway to develop the site as Flipdaddy’s, a gourmet hamburger and craft beer restaurant. Jeff Barnes and Kennedy Striplin of Stirling Properties represented Guggenheim in the transaction. Michael Carro of SVN worked for the seller. 

GSPS Marine & Yacht Sales has leased 1,351 square feet of retail space at The Wharf of Orange Beach for a new sales office, to open this spring. The new office will be located on the second floor of the mixed-use project in Suite F-201. Jeff Barnes with Stirling Properties handled the transaction.

A&O Healthcare Management LLC has leased some 1,750 square feet of office space at 4358 Midmost Drive in Mobile, with plans to open in early March. Jill Meeks with Stirling Properties managed the transaction.

Bryant Bank will open a new branch at 24847 Commercial Ave. in Orange Beach after renovating the property. The current tenant is Orange Beach Lifestyle and Performance Medicine. Renovations are expected to be complete at the end of April for a targeted grand opening in May. Baldwin County native Doug Sizemore, senior vice president of commercial lending, has been tapped to oversee the new location.

Out-of-town investors recently paid $285,000 for Bay Villa Apartments, an eight- unit, four-building complex encompassing some 6,180 square feet and located in Bay Minette. David Monroe with Beck Partners CRE represented the seller; Sharon Wright with White-Spunner Realty worked for the buyer. Premier Apartment Services has been selected as the property manager for the complex.

Papa Murphy’s recently opened a new 1400-square-foot restaurant at 7820 Moffett Road in Semmes, according to Buff Teague with JLL, who represented the tenant.