NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Important guests flew into Charleston to witness another groundbreaking moment for the Boeing plant in North Charleston.
The first steel column for Boeing's aircraft delivery center went up Tuesday. The column's placement comes just a few months after the final steam beam was put on the assembly plant in September.
The delivery center is where companies will pick up their planes once they're assembled. Ninety percent of Boeing's customers are not based out of the United States. Boeing executives say it will give people from other countries a chance to experience all the lowcountry has to offer.
Boeing hopes to begin building its first 787 Dreamliner in North Charleston by July and export it by early 2012.
Boeing South Carolina fabricates, assembles and installs systems for aft (rear) fuselage sections of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and joins and integrates midbody fuselage sections from other partners.
In October 2009, Boeing selected the North Charleston site for the second 787 Dreamliner final assembly and delivery line. Boeing broke ground on the new, 1.2-million-square-foot facility in December 2009. Once complete, Boeing South Carolina will perform final assembly and deliver 787s from North Charleston to customers around the world. The facility is 240 acres.
To date, more than 90 percent of the Boeing direct contracted dollars for the project have been with South-Carolina-based companies.