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Originally published October 13, 2010 at 6:17 PM | Page modified October 13, 2010 at 8:02 PM

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Boeing 787s stack up at Paine Field awaiting FAA approval

The edges of Everett's Paine Field airport are turning into an overflow airplane parking lot as Boeing builds 787 Dreamliners that can't be delivered yet.

Seattle Times aerospace reporter

The edges of Everett's Paine Field are turning into an overflow airplane parking lot as 787 Dreamliners roll out of Boeing's assembly plant. The planes aren't flying anywhere soon: Instead of engines, they have big yellow concrete blocks hanging from the wing pylons.

On Wednesday, 13 production Dreamliners and one flight-test airplane were parked at Paine Field. Four more completed planes are in storage. By mid-February, at least 10 additional Dreamliners could roll out and need a temporary parking space.

Boeing must continue to churn out the jets in anticipation of federal certification and the beginning of deliveries in mid-February.

Six flight-test airplanes are flying, and one of the production models is expected to fly as an add-on to the flight-test program sometime next month. The other planes will likely sit there until the Federal Aviation Administration certifies the jet early next year.

With the Boeing flight line full, five Dreamliners are now parked in unaccustomed spots.

Boeing has leased space from the airport on the west side of the runway outside the Future of Flight aviation center, where two Royal Maroc 787s and one Japan Airlines (JAL) 787 sit in a new airplane-parking area. Another two 787s, one for JAL and one for LAN Airlines of Chile, are parked next to Highway 526 outside Boeing's giant assembly building.

In anticipation of the rush of 787s ahead of first delivery and to allow for expansion, Snohomish County spent $5.5 million to build a taxiway around the north end of the airfield that connects to the new ramp area adjacent to the Future of Flight.

Dominic Gates: 206-464-2963 or dgates@seattletimes.com

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