The airpark at Grant County International Airport in Moses Lake, Washington, is for sale or lease as of May 5th. The 137-acre facility is known for housing aircraft – especially the Boeing 737, which remains grounded.
You can own a Boeing 737 MAX airpark
Grant County International Airport is not a major airport for passengers. However, it is a facility for aircraft storage. The owner, ASPI Group, Inc., is offering the Northwest Commercial Airliner Storage Facility for sale or lease. It is one of the largest privately-owned aerospace properties in the United States, according to the company.
At this location, Boeing is currently storing 737 MAX aircraft until the grounding is lifted and those planes can be delivered. The airpark is also a site for pre-delivery storage of Boeing 787s and will service the same role for the MAX in the future.
Most commercial jets can take off and land from the airport, which has a runway measuring 13,500 feet. The 137-acre facility is just off the runway. There is a 30-year fence agreement that gives this facility access to the runway.
Many will know the airpark for its “Christmas Tree” configuration. In addition, there is another apron where aircraft can be stored in a dense configuration. The facility recently underwent some improvements, including the installation of LED overhead lighting, scarified concrete taxiway and ramp areas, fresh striping, and the installation of static grounding rods throughout. For safety, there are also fire hydrants in close proximity to parked aircraft through a dedicated fire hydrant loop.
The Grant County International Airport is also where Mitsubishi is testing the delayed SpaceJet regional jet.
An ideal storage area
ASPI Group notes that the climate in at Moses Lake is a “dry high desert climate” with 325 VFR (visual flight rules) days per year – meaning the weather is quite nice for airport storage and operations. The drier environment is better for aircraft since they face less wear and tear on the exterior.
Currently, around the world, more aircraft are entering (or already in) storage than departing such facilities. Places like Grant County International are known storage locations and can offer space for a large number of aircraft. Other storage areas, like airports and runways, are more limited in their offerings and are better off for short-term storage.
Sending a large number of aircraft to one storage area also lessens the complexity of operations for manufacturers and airlines. In terms of maintenance and storage procedures, different aircraft types have different needs and processes, so, for efficiency, it is better to store most aircraft of a single type or requiring similar storage procedures together.
It is unclear what the starting price or rate is for the airpark. Nor is it clear what motivated the ASPI Group to pursue this. Currently, many Boeing 737 MAX jets are stored at the facility and, it does appear that the airpark receives some stream of pre-delivery storage from Boeing, which has significant assembly and delivery centers in Seattle.
What do you think about this offer? Let us know in the comments!