Chris Van Horne, NBC 5 Fort Worth Reporter
Texas Governor Rick Perry and Fort Worth mayor Betsy Price help break ground at Bell Helicopter for the new 230 million dollar upgrade.
Bell Helicopter, a long time Fort Worth-based company, officially broke ground on Monday on its new global headquarters building.
The new building will anchor the corner of Hurst Boulevard and the newly renamed Bell Helicopter Boulevard, as part of the company's large northeast Tarrant County location.
The symbolic turning of dirt, as part of the groundbreaking ceremony, was made all the more meaningful with Gov. Rick Perry and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst taking part and speaking to the assembled crowd.
"Texas is open for business and companies like Bell will be better suited to come to Texas," the governor said.
Everyone in attendance agreed, the governor being in attendance shows the importance of the project.
"It sends a big statement that they believe that this is very important not only for Fort Worth and Tarrant County, but for Texas," said Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price.
Bell is investing $230 million into the facilities upgrade. The new facilities will save on a variety of costs for the company and consolidate its North Texas operations.
"You need to be modern in a global competitive environment," said Bell President & CEO John Garrison. "We need to attract the best and brightest minds in the world to win in this marketplace that we compete in. Facilities help us do that."
The facility will house 6,000 Bell employees in North Texas and will allow for the company's training facility to move from Alliance Airport to the northeast location.
Once completed, the new headquarters and investment will save Bell 20-percent on its waste and energy use by 2015 and save $19 million in annual costs.
The new facilities will also have a big economic impact on the cities near the Fort Worth facility.
"The development you see around it, new homes, you'll see a hotel probably on the northside (of Highway 10) probably along with some retail," said Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley. "It's going to be a great kick-off to that rehabilitation."
Whitley hopes the facility improvements will spark growth along Highway 10 through the Mid-Cities area.
But Gov. Perry and Lt. Gov. Dewhurst made it clear that this investment is proof that Texas is the place to do business.
"This is a company that's more than just about creating jobs, it's about a company that's making a difference in the world," Gov. Perry said. "And for them to send the message all around the world that the global headquarters for Bell Helicopter is going to be in Texas."
"This is an attractive place to do business because companies, Bell Helicopter and others, know that we're not going to change the rules midstream," Lt. Gov. Dewhurst said.