Colgan Air to Build

Headquarters at Innovation

About 100 Colgan Air Inc. employees will depart Manassas Regional Airport and land two miles away at the company's new headquarters in Innovation@Prince William.

The Board of County Supervisors voted Tuesday to sell the Manassas-based regional airline 10 acres at the business park for $1.7 million. Company officials plan to build a 40,000-square-foot corporate headquarters and training facility, valued at $1.7 million, including equipment, inside Innovation@Prince William.

As many as 250 employees, making an average annual salary of more than $55,000, will work at the complex when it opens in March 2007, the company said.

Colgan Air's administrative and training employees will relocate from the company's airport office and other sites cross Manassas and Prince William County and about 90 more employees will be hired, said Michael J. Colgan, president of Colgan Air. Every month, about 60 Colgan Air pilots, flight attendants and mechanics from across the nation will be trained there.

Officials said the move does not represent a loss for the city because Colgan Air's maintenance crews will continue to work at the company's hangars at Manassas Regional Airport. "I don't see it as losing economic power," Manassas City Manager Lawrence D. Hughes said.

Colgan Air flies routes for Arlington-based US Airways Group Inc. This year it began offering feeder service for Houston-based Continental Airlines Inc. That deal will help Colgan increase its workforce by 300 workers, to about 1,000 employees by year's end.

Last month, the General Services Administration announced it would buy 15 acres inside Innovation for an FBI building that will house 300 workers. "The technology park is performing as the employment center that the elected officials envisioned 10 years ago," said Martin J. Briley, executive director of Prince William's Economic Development Department.

Supervisors Approve

Wineries in Prince William

Two Virginia winemakers had plenty to toast this month when the Board of County Supervisors approved an ordinance allowing wineries in Prince William County.

Until now, the county's ordinances allowed vineyards but didn't mention wineries, where grapes are not only cultivated but wine is produced.

Chris Pearmund and John Delmare, who run wineries in Fauquier County, had asked county officials to allow them to open a business in the Haymarket area.

Once they have selected about 10 acres for the winery, they'll plant in the spring, harvest in the fall and bottle their wine over six months.

Pearmund, who runs Pearmund Cellars, said the two don't want to rush the opening of their winery and are taking the time to develop something that will draw oenophiles and tourists back again and again.

"To blow a first impression by rushing a destination winery and rushing a wine to market is short-sighted," Pearmund said.

Old Town Manassas Retains

Its Historic Designation

Old Town Manassas still offers a slice of Americana. The National Trust for Historic Preservation's National Main Street Center again recognized Historic Manassas Inc. and 592 other Main Street revitalization programs for preserving their historic Main Street buildings. Historic Manassas has received the national accreditation for commercial district revitalization every year since 2000.

County Housing Prices Rise

To Median of $355,000

Housing prices in Prince William County continue to climb, pricing many first-time buyers out of the market, said Tony Giglio, president of the Prince William Association of Realtors.

The median sale price in May reached $355,000, up from $279,000 in May 2004, according to the association. The number of houses sold in the county in May increased to 1,286, from 1,082 in May 2004.

"For many hard-working families the goal of home ownership means moving away from Prince William to areas with lower prices," Giglio said in a news release.

-- JENALIA MORENO

E-mail news about Prince William County business to morenoj@washpost.com.