Darlington Borough Council Planning Committee has approved plans for an aviation village and jet centre at Teesside International Airport in Darlington, UK.

The £25m ($29m) plan is being led by Willis Lease Finance (WLFC) and its wholly owned subsidiary, Willis Aviation Services (WASL).

The planned Aviation Village will have five hangars for aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) and painting operations.

The facility will be built on land west of the main terminal building, which was initially allotted for 350 homes prior to its purchase as part of a deal to bring the airport back into public ownership in 2019.

Willis’ Jet Centre is designed to offer a full suite of ground handling services to meet the needs of business, private aviation, cargo and military flights.

WASL has leased Hangar II at the airport and is using it as its base for aircraft maintenance, storage and disassembly.

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The development of the two facilities is expected to create 250 to 300 jobs in the region.

Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “This decision marks another big step forward for our airport – and I’m delighted these vital plans have been backed.

“I have always said that for our airport to truly flourish, it must be about more than just holiday flights – and we are delivering just that.

“Willis is making a huge commitment to Teesside and today marks another great leap in securing our airport’s future.

“When we launched the UK’s first and largest Freeport, we did so on the promise it would create well-paid jobs for local people and that is exactly what this investment will do.”

“This new aviation village, our £200m Southside Business Park, our freight hub and our Freeport will truly serve our growth ambitions for decades to come.”

Earlier this year, Teesside International Airport joined Air France-KLM’s sustainable aviation fuel programme.