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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests to Support Development of Unmanned Aerial Systems Test Range in Pendleton, Oregon

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $3 million grant to the city of Pendleton, Oregon, to make infrastructure improvements at Eastern Oregon Regional Airport needed for the development of an Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) test range.

“President Trump is working diligently to improve our nation’s infrastructure and create jobs around the country,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This project will help develop a new UAS test range in Oregon that will bring cutting edge technology to the region and create new jobs in an innovative industry.”

“There’s not a better place in the nation for a UAS test range,” said U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley. “This grant for Pendleton is of extreme value to the industry, and to the economy of the region. I will continue to use my seat on the Senate’s spending committee, the Appropriations Committee, to support a strong Economic Development Agency (EDA) to strengthen rural Oregon and rural America.”

“The Eastern Oregon Regional Airport plays a critical role in the region’s economy, especially for Pendleton,” said Congressman Greg Walden. “The EDA’s decision to award a $3 million grant to the City of Pendleton to support the expansion of the airport’s UAS Range is welcomed news. The UAS Range is one of the leading ranges in the world, and I was happy to work with local officials on securing this grant in an effort to further support development of the range. I look forward to seeing it pay off for the City of Pendleton and all of eastern Oregon.”

The project will include the development of a T-Hanger and up to three box hangars to serve the UAS test range facility.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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