Coopesa’s CEO talks to Aviation Week about the two new hangars’ status and adding widebody capabilities.

The construction of Coopesa’s new hangars should resume in early January 2018, after a two-year hiatus due to differences between the Costa Rican government and the company contracted to build them.

The two new hangars will replace Coopesa’s existing three because the San Jose (Juan Santamaria) International airport’s terminal needs to expand, and the MRO currently occupies that space.

The new hangar one will have capacity for eight narrowbodies–or four narrowbodies and two widebodies, says Minor Rodriguez, the MRO’s CEO. “The capacity for the second hangar will be three widebodies or four narrowbodies,” he says.

The builder expects to finish the first hangar in May 2019, says Rodriguez.

In the meantime, Coopesa recently deployed a portable hangar adjacent to its existing ones for paint. Rodriguez says not having enough paint space has prevented it from getting some work in the past, “but now we have more capacity for it.” Given that this is a portable hangar, it will simply move when Coopesa relocates to its new site, which is southwest of SJO.

As part of its process to prepare for widebody MRO, Coopesa is in the process of adding Boeing 767 certification—a service it plans to attain in 2018. Today it services narrowbodies: Airbus A318/A319/A320/A321, Embraer 190, Boeing 737 Classic and NG, as well as Boeing 757 aircraft. Coopesa also is working on doubling its workforce to accommodate the additional staff needed for widebody MRO, says Rodriguez.


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