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CHICAGO-With one last bit of fanfare, Boeing Corp. has moved into its new digs in the West Loop. Workers spent Labor Day weekend unloading trucks at 100 N. Riverside Plaza, the first 200 workers moved in Tuesday and a welcome wagon that included Mayor Richard M. Daley and Governor George Ryan appeared at a ceremony Wednesday.

“Boeing is in the midst of many exciting changes, and our new world headquarters in Chicago is part of our ongoing transformation,” says Boeing Chairman and CEO Phil Condit. “We intend to grow our enterprise here and create businesses that open frontiers and advance technology, while allowing our business leaders in other locations to drive their businesses to their full potential.”

The aircraft manufacturer formerly based in Seattle eventually plans to have 400 employees, mainly executive level, housed in the top 12 floors of the 36-story former Morton International headquarters overlooking the Chicago River. Before signing a long-term lease with Lend Lease Real Estate Investments, Inc. for 270,000 sf, Boeing won more than $50 million in economic incentives, allowing Chicago to beat out Dallas and Denver for the firm’s world headquarters.

Boeing will generate $4.3 billion in economic benefit over 20 years, according to an Arthur Andersen study. The state expects to collect $120 million on its $29-million incentive package over the next 20 years.

“Boeing’s decision to make a home in Chicago will generate other significant economic developments,” Ryan says. “The potential for collaboration with Illinois technology companies could create tremendous economic opportunities for citizens across the state.”

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