Pratt and Whitney holds groundbreaking ceremony in Fountain City

COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Hundreds of new jobs are coming to the Fountain City. Pratt and Whitney, an aerospace manufacturing business in Columbus, broke ground on a multi-million dollar investment.

The company is adding 81,000 square feet to its Columbus Engine Center along with new machinery, and equipment with Governor Brian Kemp in Columbus today for the announcement.

Local and state officials gathered for the breaking ground ceremony.

“It’s what makes Georgia the number one state in the country for business because we’re doing projects like this,” said Kemp.

Pratt and Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacturing, and service of aircraft engines and has called Columbus home for over 40 years. It is expanding its operations with a 206 million dollar investment.

“This investment will support both our engine center, which is behind us, as well as the forging business on the other side of the campus,” said President of Pratt and Whitney Shane Eddy.

Officials say the investment will have significant positive impacts on the Columbus economy including 400 additional job openings.

“What it means is there are roughly 25 million dollars in new annual payroll in the Columbus economy,” said Eddy.

Chief Executive Officer of the Greater Columbus Chamber of Comemrce, Jerald Mitchell, said those dollars will benefit businesses and people in the community.

“People will hopefully be able to purchase new homes. They’ll purchase cars. You know, they have more disposable income.” said Mitchell.

“If you get jobs like Pratt and Whitney they have always provided good solid wage jobs that money turns over. That’s what sustains any community and allows us to provide for the quality of life people expect,” said Mayor Skip Henderson.

According to Shane Eddy, the President of Pratt and Whitney, the new jobs will be created by the end of 2028.

Governor Brian Kemp, who first announced this expansion at the 2023 Paris Airshow in France, spoke during the ceremony saying the jobs will help more than the Columbus community.

“These jobs are going to help a big part of rural Georgia in this part of the state,” said Kemp.

Mayor Henderson thanked the business for believing in the Fountain City.

“We want to thank Pratt Whitney for reinvesting in Columbus, keeping those ties strong, and improving our community,” said Henderson.

Kelis McGhee

Kelis joined the News Leader 9 team in June 2023.