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MAY 2005

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Kentucky's Largest Employer Gets Larger

UPS to haul more cargo through Louisville,
as Commonwealth overhauls tax system.



rown continues to do a lot for Kentucky, especially the Louisville metro area.
UPS will be adding a heavy cargo facility to its air hub in Louisville. The $82.5-million project grows the company's already large Kentucky work force.

      United Parcel Service is expanding its Louisville operations to incorporate its Dayton, Ohio, freight-sorting operations acquired in last year's purchase of Menlo Worldwide Forwarding. The move will initially create 720 jobs (120 full-time, 600 part-time) with full-time jobs possibly growing to more than 400. UPS currently employs more than 20,000 in the Commonwealth.
      UPS spokesman John Hindman says the company looked at all seven of its regional hubs before deciding to expand in Louisville. But the Louisville option required heavy-duty figuring by engineers to site the new facility in an area with limited space at Louisville International Airport.
      "We had to figure out a way to shoehorn it into an airport where we already have quite a bit of activity," Hindman says. "Our engineers made a way to incorporate it from a physical standpoint."
      UPS will invest US$82.5 million to construct the new 785,257-sq.-ft. (73,000-sq.-m.) heavy cargo air service hub which will handle freight weighing more than 150 pounds.
      Kentucky's incentive largesse was also a key factor, Hindman says. The state will provide a 10-year package worth $20 million, tied to job creation.
      Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson is convinced the merged governments of Louisville and Jefferson County helped smooth the path for the UPS deal. He also notes that the expansion will likely trigger further investment in the region.
      "Having one government to deal with played a role," Abramson says. "The merger made government much more efficient. UPS is our largest employer and obviously could have located these jobs at several of their regional hubs. Obviously, they found Louisville a great place to do business. The greater impact will be if the heavy packaging is anything like their delivery service. We will have a significant influx of many of their customers who may do light manufacturing or assembly or inventory work here. The UPS expansion is a whole new opportunity to attract business."
      Louisville International is already the world's 12th busiest in terms of handling air cargo. It is home to UPS Airlines. Runway and taxiway expansion at the airport will allow it to handle UPS Airlines' new fleet of Airbus A380 super-jumbo freighter aircraft due for delivery beginning in 2009. UPS has ordered 10, with an option for 10 more, of the behemoth carriers that have capacity to carry three decks of cargo with container capacity of nearly 40,000 cu. ft. (1,132 cu. m.).
      But that's not all the activity at the airport. Chautauqua Airlines says its new maintenance hangar, due to open in December 2005, will employ more than 300. Chautauqua is a wholly owned subsidiary of Republic Airways Holdings and provides regional jet service for Delta, United and US Airways.

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