Oracle Aviation Breaks Ground on New Aviation Center in Sioux City

Several local leaders were joined by a representative of the federal government’s Economic Development Administration and three executives from Omaha-based Oracle Aviation on Tuesday afternoon for a groundbreaking for the metro region’s new Aviation Center at the Sioux Gateway Airport / Brigadier General Bud Day Field.
Sioux City Mayor Bob Scott welcomed Dr. Albert Mosley, the President of Morningside University, and Western Iowa Tech Community College President Dr. Terry Murrell, as well as Mike Wells of The Siouxland Initiative, Joe Kruse, the current Chair of the airport’s Board of Directors, and Joel Jarman, the General Manager of L&L Builders, among others, to break ground on the new Aviation Center at Sioux Gateway Airport. Local leaders were joined by Alex Smith of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration and executives Bob and Julie Negus, along with Dave Poole, representing Oracle Aviation, for the long-awaited ceremonial groundbreaking at Sioux Gateway Airport.

Mayor Bob Scott said, “This is an exciting day for Sioux City and our tri-state region as several of our leading local institutions and organizations have come together to invest significantly in the future of aviation in our community.” Just prior to breaking ground on the nearly 40,000 square foot facility, which includes hangar space, training classrooms, and office facilities, the mayor added, “We are committed to increasing activity at this airport and to make Sioux Gateway an aviation destination for this industry.”

City officials, collaborating with leaders at The Siouxland Initiative, facilitated an ongoing dialogue with executives from Oracle Aviation as they sought to increase activity and enhance aviation operations locally. After establishing initial interest from Oracle, the parties began to communicate with Morningside University and Western Iowa Tech in exploration of the possibility of adding degree awarding programs. One year later, Morningside announced the creation of a degree in aviation fields, while WITCC plans to offer an Associates of Applied Science in Aviation Maintenance.

Oracle Aviation Vice President of Business Development, Dave Poole, explained, “We have developed similar operations in the past and believe this market has exceptional untapped potential. Oracle Aviation is eager to get started in Sioux City and excited to be partnering with so many well-established and successful Siouxland institutions and organizations.” Poole continued, “We are not only confident, but absolutely convinced, that Sioux Gateway Airport can become one of the leading centers for aviation in the entire upper-Midwest. Brigadier General Bud Day Field is perfectly located and ideally situated to see exponential growth in the near term and Oracle Aviation intends to help Sioux City realize this potential.”

Coupled with a $1 million grant from the Economic Development Administration, the City of Sioux City, The Siouxland Initiative, Morningside University, and Western Iowa Tech have all pledged their cooperation to get the multi-million dollar facility built and new program off the ground. The 40,000 square-foot facility is expected to house hangar space, offices, and training classrooms reflecting the community’s long-term commitment to all aspects of aviation. With an international pilot shortage, as well as a significant lack of skilled aviation mechanics, these programs are expected to see robust demand as soon as they are open to students for enrollment.