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September 11, 2012

Triumph Aero in lease negotiations over Dallas plant

Triumph Aerostructures is in negotiations with a Dallas company on a new lease covering its west Dallas manufacturing facilities.

Triumph spokeswoman Lynne Warne said in an email Tuesday that “we are still in negotiations” with American Brownfield “and are hoping for a resolution,” but could not comment further.

Robert Riggs, spokesman for American Brownfields, acknowledged that negotiations were continuing and said that a proposal had been submitted to Triumph for a one-year lease extension under the same terms as Triumph’s prior lease with the Navy.

American Brownfields, headed by real estate investor Stuart Jones of Dallas, has agreed to pay the U.S. government $375,515 for the 1940s vintage aircraft manufacturing plant long occupied by Vought Aircraft Industries and its predecessor companies.

As part of the property sale, which Riggs said has not yet been completed, American Brownfields has agreed to assume responsibility for the costs of cleaning up polluted soils and water around the 425 acre property, problems that in some cases date back to World War II when North American Aviation first operated the plant.

Triumph, which employs about 2,400 salaried and hourly workers at the Dallas plant, said last month that the lease terms proposed by American Brownfields would effectively double the company’s annual cost of operating the 5-million square-foot manufacturing and assembly plant.

Triumph has said it will begin planning to move operations out of the facility if it cannot get more favorable lease terms than those initially proposed by Jones.

Major components for the Boeing C-17, Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey, Northrop Grumman Global Hawk, Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters and Gulfstream G550 business jets are built at the plant.

- Bob Cox

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