FORT SMITH, Ark. — Fort Smith city leaders approved an ordinance and resolution supporting plans to convert the 188th Air National Guard Wing into a pilot training facility during a city director meeting Tuesday, Feb. 15, night.
The airbase will be the future home of F-35 fighter planes and a Republic of Singapore F-16 squadron.
During the meeting, Fort Smith City Director Neal Martin said that it's one of the biggest things to happen to the Fort Smith economy in a long, long time.
" I want everyone to hear this - this project, this project that we're talking about here, is going to have an economic impact up to a billion dollars a year - not million, not 200 million, a billion dollars a year. These are projects we haven't seen here in Fort Smith, so we're excited. This is equivalent to a super-project."
Once the conversion is complete, close to 900 new jobs will be created. Best estimates indicate that crews will complete the conversion sometime in 2023.
HOW TO ADD THE 5NEWS APP TO YOUR STREAMING DEVICE
ROKU: add the channel from the ROKU store or by searching for KFSM in the Channel Store.
For Fire TV, search for "KFSM" to find the free app to add to your account. Another option for Fire TV is to have the app delivered directly to your Fire TV through Amazon.
To report a typo or grammatical error, please email KFSMDigitalTeam@tegna.com.