Officials cut ribbon on new NOAA Aircraft Operations Center
Federal, state, and local officials cut the ribbon June 2 on the new facility for NOAA’s Aircraft Operations Center at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport in Lakeland, Florida. The center is the main base for NOAA’s nine specialized environmental data-gathering aircraft, including the agency’s three “hurricane hunter” planes. NOAA aircraft play a vital role in collecting environmental data essential to protecting lives and property, conserving and managing coastal as well as marine resources, and understanding weather and climate. NOAA’s aircraft fleet is maintained and operated by a team of 110 civilians and officers of the NOAA Corps, one of the nation’s uniformed services, which can trace its roots back to 1807 and President Thomas Jefferson. Designed by The Lunz Group and built by Register Construction, the new facility includes a 58,000-square-foot aircraft hangar, office space, and facilities for aircraft repairs and component storage.