Mary Thornley, the Trident Technical College president who steered an ambitious plan to build an aeronautics training center into an $80 million reality, calls the facility’s groundbreaking more than just the celebration of a building.
“It is that structure, that concrete manifestation that is going to allow us to create an aeronautical culture in the Lowcountry,” she said. “It will permeate everyday life in a way that nothing in terms of economic development has ever done before.”
Business leaders, politicians and educators joined Friday to ceremoniously turn the first shovels of dirt for the S.C. Aeronautical Training Center to be built on 25 acres at the college’s main campus in North Charleston. A combination of local, state, federal and private dollars will fund the project that Thornley first proposed in 2013 and that is scheduled for completion by the end of this decade.