Defense firm Leonardo DRS has started expanding its West Plains manufacturing facility.
The company’s expansion is expected to result in the creation of more than 100 jobs, thanks in part to a collaborative effort to build a new overpass that addresses logistics and efficiency concerns.
Governor Mike Parson said: “We’re proud to see the public and private sectors working together to provide the infrastructure that Leonardo DRS and the West Plains community need,”
“This expansion is a prime example of infrastructure’s importance to business investment and shows Missouri delivers what companies need to grow.
“We appreciate Leonardo DRS’ commitment to a local workforce and support for our military and look forward to their continued success.”
To complete the overpass needed for its expansion, Leonardo DRS was supported by multiple organizations, including the City of West Plains.
Additional support was provided by the Missouri Department of Economic Development’s Community Development Block Grant program, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration, the Delta Regional Authority’s Community Infrastructure Fund, the Missouri Department of Transportation, and the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway.
Steve Foster, Leonardo DRS Vice President of Operations – Land Systems said: “The construction of the Independence Drive overpass was a key prerequisite for the continued growth of Leonardo DRS’ manufacturing campus in West Plains,”
“Because the campus is bisected by U.S. Route 160, it was important we arrived at a solution that addressed the safety of our community partners as well as DRS workers while improving security and workflow connectivity. We very much appreciate the efforts of the City of West Plains, and many others at the local, state, and federal levels who came together to ensure the continued success of this location and its community.”
Leonardo DRS used the Missouri Works program for this expansion, which is a vehicle that helps businesses develop and keep employees by giving financing through withholdings or tax credits for job creation.