Santa Rosa County, Florida

Aerospace is our mission.


Santa Rosa Economic Development

Aviation and Aerospace Take Off in Santa Rosa County

Santa Rosa County offers aviation and aerospace companies shovel-ready sites, modern infrastructure and a trained, educated, and experienced workforce. Aerospace and aviation industries, from developing technologies to Tier 1 & 2 suppliers, can maximize their ROI by locating where the sites, employees and civic support they need are in place and ready for takeoff.


Santa Rosa: Top 5 Reasons

  1. Santa Rosa County is located centrally for five aircraft OEMs: Airbus in Mobile, AL; Embraer in Jacksonville and Melbourne, FL; Gulfstream in Savannah, GA; and Boeing in Charleston, SC.
  2. For three consecutive years, Florida has been ranked in the top 10 best in the country for aerospace manufacturing attractiveness by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
  3. Florida’s $52 billion military and defense-related industries are the state’s third top economic sector. It tops the list in Santa Rosa County.
  4. In 2016, 204 defense contractors in Santa Rosa County landed 124 contracts valued at $46.5 million.
  5. Santa Rosa County boasts a workforce of over 70,000 people. Including adjacent counties brings the workforce to over 300,000.


Santa Rosa County is located at Florida’s western tip, at the center of the U.S. Gulf Coast. We can reach Houston and Charleston just as quickly as Miami.

We're located centrally for five Southeast aircraft OEMs.





  • About 34,000 military retirees and a wealth of civilian DoD contractors provide a unique workforce ideal for aerospace, defense and information technology. The number of military retirees in the area grows by over 2,400 each year.
  • From high school forward, aviation-specific education programs are in place across the region, including the University of Florida Research and Education Engineering Facility near Eglin Air Force Base.
  • Qualified aviation and aerospace manufacturing companies can receive Incumbent Worker Training (IWT) grant funding.
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  • Between 2000 and 2016, contractors in Santa Rosa County were awarded 1,685 contracts valued at $480.7 million.
  • In addition to Whiting Field in Santa Rosa County, there are five aviation-related military installations in surrounding counties: NAS Pensacola, Naval Support Activity Panama City, Eglin Air Force Base, Hurlburt Field, and Tyndall Air Force Base.
  • The Department of Defense has a $22.1 billion impact in Northwest Florida, the most of any region in Florida, and one of the top regions in the nation.
  • NAS Whiting Field provides services and material support for the training of U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, and International student aviators.

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  • Peter Prince Field, located south of NAS Whiting Field, is Santa Rosa County’s public use airport.
  • Interstate 10, U.S. 98 and U.S. 90, major east-west highways, run through the county.
  • Transportation infrastructure includes nearby Pensacola International Airport and Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport, Interstate 10, CSX rail, and access to the Port of Pensacola, a designated foreign trade zone.

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  • Aviation-specific property at Whiting Aviation Park has limited access to runways for testing and development opportunities.
  • Whiting Aviation Park provides industrial sites with direct airport access.
  • Santa Rosa County has three Florida First Certified Sites: Santa Rosa Industrial Park East, Blackwater Industrial Park, and Northwest Florida Industrial Park @ I-10.
  • Land pricing discounts are in place for companies purchasing lands owned by Santa Rosa County.

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Santa Rosa County is amid one of the most active air traffic zones in the world, surrounded by military aviation installations and growing commercial operations.

Santa Rosa Aviation News

Find out more at


Shannon Ogletree, Executive Director
[email protected]

Santa Rosa County EDO
6491 Caroline Street, Suite 4
Milton, Florida 32570-4592

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