Wilson Industrial Air Center Airport


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To get in touch with us, please contact the Transportation office at 252-399-2489 or the airport 252-991-6336.

Are you looking for a business location in the southeast with airport taxi-way access to your facility? The Wilson Industrial Air Center in your logical destination.

In today’s market, the successful business is keenly aware of the importance of logistics in ensuring a profitable bottom line. Exporting product and importing supplies is crucial to keeping production lines efficient and timely. Considering Wilson’s central location, pro-business climate, and outstanding airport facilities, it is obvious that Wilson Industrial Air Center is the logical destination.

Located five miles from I-95, Wilson Industrial Air Center offers onsite industrial lots with taxi-way access available for immediate development. Zoned for light industrial, a flexible site plan has been developed for the Air Center. With three 4,500-foot runways, one of which is lighted, the airport is used extensively by industrial, commercial, governmental, medical, law enforcement, military and recreational aircraft.

Existing businesses in Wilson County appreciate the proximity of the Wilson Industrial Air Center. “The time and money we save by taking our corporate airplane from our headquarters in Goshen, Indiana directly to Wilson really adds up,” according to Gene Wilson, plant manager of GNC Corporation in Wilson, NC. “Our corporate executives visit our facility often. They frequently arrive by plane at the Air Center. It certainly is a plus to have the airport so close by.”

Former Governor Jim Hunt agrees, “As competition for industrial recruitment gets tougher, those communities that work the hardest to build strong economies will be the big winners. My hometown of Wilson is a great place to do business. It offers companies nearly anything they are looking for.”

Frequently the North Carolina Department of Commerce uses the facility to bring industrial prospects to visit Wilson. Aerial tours of sites and buildings, as well as of the city itself, are taken from the Air Center.

“The Wilson Industrial Air Center,” Hunt added, “is a tremendous asset for this community and a benefit to any company that locates here.


The Wilson Industrial Air Center was developed during WWII as an outlying field to the Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, NC for the purpose of training naval aviators on the T-6 Texan Trainer. Its three runway design was important to assist new fighter pilots in avoiding cross wind approaches. As their expeience grew with training, cross wind approaches were added.The T-6 Texan two-place advanced trainer was the classroom for most of the Allied pilots who flew in World War II. Called the SNJ by the Navy and the Harvard by the RAF, the T-6 was designed as a transition trainer between basic trainers and first-line tactical aircraft.In all, the T-6 trained several hundred thousand pilots in 34 different countries. A total of 15,495 of the planes were made. Though most famous as a trainer, the T-6 Texan also won honors in World War II and in the early days of the Korean War.

The Texan was an evolution of the company’s BC-1 basic combat trainer, which was first produced for the U.S. Army Air Corps with fixed landing gear in 1937 under a contract that called for 174 planes. It was designed by North American Aviation as a low-cost trainer with all the characteristics of a high-speed fighter. Although not as fast as a fighter, it was easy to maintain and repair, had more maneuverability and was easier to handle. A pilot’s airplane, it could roll, Immelmann, loop, spin, snap, and vertical roll. It was designed to give the best possible training in all types of tactics, from ground strafing to bombardment and aerial dogfighting, and contained such versatile equipment as bomb racks, blind flying instrumentation, gun and standard cameras, fixed and flexible guns, and just about every other device that military pilots had to operate.

At the end of WWII, the Federal Government began the daunting task of drawing down and eliminating surplus warstock, to include the Wilson Industrial Air Center. The Civil Aeronautics Administration (later known as the FAA) determined that the Wilson Airport was surplus property and the facility was given to the Town of Wilson in July of 1948 as a gift. The airport has since been operated by the City of Wilson.

The Wilson Industrial Air Center is managed by a commission of individuals with interests in transportation and aviation.

  • Robbie Bass, Chairman

  • Jamie Smith

  • Robert Gene Mills

  • Thomas F. Corbett

  • Ray Mitchell

  • Larry Blair

  • Buren Williford

  • Ralph Moore

  • Mrs. Jennifer Lantz, ex-officio