IEDC, Conexus form aerospace, defense council

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The Indiana Economic Development Corp. and Conexus Indiana announced Tuesday morning that they’ve launched a group to focus on the state’s growing aerospace and defense industry.

The Indiana Aerospace and Defense Council, which met for the first time on Monday, brings together industry leaders to begin creating a plan to grow the sector.

IEDC and Conexus, an Indianapolis-based trade group focused on manufacturing and logistics, said Hoosier defense and aerospace companies have created 1,800 jobs in the past two years.

“We can be proud that Indiana-based companies are working together to bolster national security and support the military in our overseas commitments,” Indiana Secretary of Commerce Mitch Roob said in a prepared statement. “As these firms help make our country safer, they’re also making our economy stronger.”

Roob highlighted four large defense contractors operating in Indiana that collectively accounted for more than $2.6 billion in U.S. Department of Defense contracts in 2010: South Bend-based AM General LLC, Britain-based Rolls-Royce Corp., Waltham, Mass.-based Raytheon Co. and New York-based ITT Corp.

The new group will focus on broadening the state’s contractor base and helping smaller companies enter the market and compete for contracts.

It will be operated by Conexus and will receive major funding from IEDC. Ryan Metzing, an Indianapolis attorney, will serve as project director and Courtney Zaugg, a former director of international economic development at DevelopIndy, will serve as director of industry research.



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  1. How much you wanna bet, that 70% of the jobs created there (after construction) are minimum wage? And Harvey is correct, the vast majority of residents in this project will drive to their jobs, and to think otherwise, is like Harvey says, a pipe dream. Someone working at a restaurant or retail store will not be able to afford living there. What ever happened to people who wanted to build buildings, paying for it themselves? Not a fan of these tax deals.

  2. Uh, no GeorgeP. The project is supposed to bring on 1,000 jobs and those people along with the people that will be living in the new residential will be driving to their jobs. The walkable stuff is a pipe dream. Besides, walkable is defined as having all daily necessities within 1/2 mile. That's not the case here. Never will be.

  3. Brad is on to something there. The merger of the Formula E and IndyCar Series would give IndyCar access to International markets and Formula E access the Indianapolis 500, not to mention some other events in the USA. Maybe after 2016 but before the new Dallara is rolled out for 2018. This give IndyCar two more seasons to run the DW12 and Formula E to get charged up, pun intended. Then shock the racing world, pun intended, but making the 101st Indianapolis 500 a stellar, groundbreaking event: The first all-electric Indy 500, and use that platform to promote the future of the sport.

  4. No, HarveyF, the exact opposite. Greater density and closeness to retail and everyday necessities reduces traffic. When one has to drive miles for necessities, all those cars are on the roads for many miles. When reasonable density is built, low rise in this case, in the middle of a thriving retail area, one has to drive far less, actually reducing the number of cars on the road.

  5. The Indy Star announced today the appointment of a new Beverage Reporter! So instead of insightful reports on Indy pro sports and Indiana college teams, you now get to read stories about the 432nd new brewery open or some obscure Hoosier winery winning a county fair blue ribbon. Yep, that's the coverage we Star readers crave. Not.