The National Airport Plan classifies Taranto Grottaglie as an airport of “national interest”, particularly considering its functions as an integrated logistics platform in support of industrial research and development.
The Taranto Grottaglie Airport plays a leading role in the cargo-logistics operations of the entire national-regional system. The successful integration of air transport and aerospace industries, accomplished here, also provides an example of international relevance. Taranto Grottaglie is already a well-established element in systems of local manufacturing and international programs for production of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner fuselage. The strategy at the European level is to further develop the Taranto Grottaglie infrastructure, for purposes of growing the industrial and academic research systems essential to the aeronautics/aerospace segment. As one of the early actions under this strategy, Taranto Grottaglie has been selected as the first Italian spaceport servicing suborbital flights.
The airport thus intends to continue its actions for development of a structure offering optimal logistics conditions, including provision of a flight path for pilotless aircraft – considered essential to attracting and retaining major manufacturers and research institutions.
In this regard, following consultation with the industrial partners involved in this ambitious manufacturing-research program, the airport has now engaged in an expansion and infrastructural development plan, in harmony with the programs of the Puglia Aerospace Technological District, of which the airport is a member – a district recognised among Italy’s most successful in terms of growth and results. This harmonised development plan enters in the policies on incorporating manufacturing-research functions and benefits within airport and aerospace activities, expressed and strongly supported by the Puglia regional government.