HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — The United Launch Alliance will be retiring its Atlas V project in the city of Harlingen.

The ULA has been in operation with the City of Harlingen for many years and provided several services.

However, operations will be moved to Decatur, Alabama.

“Our efforts are going to continue to attract and to recruit those large companies so we can have a great and thriving city,” Interim Manager CEO Harlingen Economic Development Corporation, Beverly Loftus said.

Leaders with the Harlingen Economic Development Corporation said they will continue to strive to bring new businesses to the community.

Officials said the goal is to now work and market with different companies so they can move into the current United Launch Alliance space.

“We have a really good relationship with the City of Harlingen with the airport and with United Launch Alliance, the ULA has been very transparent in them exiting the market and is working with the airport to ensure that space is available to show if we have a prospective tenant coming in,” Loftus said.

Leaders said the facility can be used for different services.

“The hanger attached to the ula building so that would make good operations for maintenance repair and overhaul and so those are some of the clients we are looking for the additional space which is approximately 200,000 square feet would make great manufacturing space,” Loftus said.

“Obviously, we are not happy to see them go but this isn’t because they don’t want to be don’t want to be in Harlingen this is because they are retiring the Atlas V,” Mayor City of Harlingen Norma Sepulveda said.

With the Atlas V retiring and moving to Decatur Alabama, many may wonder what will happen to the current employees.

Mayor Sepulveda said their goal is to keep these current workers in Harlingen.

“However, one job loss is something that we don’t want in the city of Harlingen and we are going to work with them to ensure the transition is smooth and hopefully, we can retain those employees to choose to move to Alabama,” Sepulveda said.

“Those employees have a really great skill set and so we have an industry here in Harlingen and in the Rio Grande Valley that could use those talents,” Loftus said.

Officials say the ULA has been transparent in letting their workers know what is happening.

The plant is expected to close late in the year.