PIMA COUNTY, Ariz. (KGUN9-TV) - The Pima County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 to approve an incentives agreement with World View, a commercial balloon spaceflight company.
The approval will allow World View to build its world headquarters and first launchpad south of Tucson International Airport in the Sonoran Corridor.
The innovative Tucson-based company uses high-altitude balloons to launch communications, research and scientific equipment to the stratosphere and even into orbit, according to a media release from Pima County.
The company is expected to employ more than 400 employees in the next five years, with average annual salaries greater than $55,000.
"Today’s vote by the Board of Supervisors and World View’s decision to stay and grow their company here is just the beginning for the Sonoran Corridor. And this is just the beginning for thousands, maybe even hundreds of thousands of new jobs in the Corridor,” said Board Chair Sharon Bronson.
“Jobs, jobs, jobs. That’s what this is all about. They’re why we’ve spent four years planning the Sonoran Corridor and they’re why we are continuing to develop it. It’s not just lines on a map. It’s real and it will transform our local economy and spur growth and prosperity for many, many years to come."
The Corridor is a 50-square-mile area surrounding the Tucson International Airport that includes some of Pima County’s largest employers, among them Raytheon Missile Systems, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Tucson International Airport, the Port of Tucson, and the University of Arizona Tech Park.
Phoenix-based Applied Economics Inc. conducted an economic impact study of World View’s proposed operation and the study estimates the company will have a $3.5 billion impact on the local economy over the next 20 years.