Higher, Faster, Further: 1970-1996

The Boeing Company ... Rapid Transit and Wind Turbines

To combat the recession during the early 1970s, Boeing turned to a variety of other new products and endeavors.

Rapid transit car in Chicago

In August 1971, Boeing became system manager for a fully automatic personal rapid transit system at Morgantown, W. Va. Boeing workers designed and built the vehicles and tested the system at the Kent Space Center near Seattle, Wash. Under another contract, Boeing Vertol built light rail vehicles for Boston, Mass., and San Francisco, Calif., and later built rapid transit cars for the Chicago Transit Authority.

Boeing Engineering and Construction, formed in 1974, built gigantic wind turbines in the Columbia River Gorge, developed a process to fertilize crops in the desert near Boardman, Ore., with Portland's municipal solid waste, built a desalination system for a resort in the Virgin Islands and sold portable asphalt plants.

Other products included control systems for dams, voice scramblers for police departments and microwave landing aids for airplanes. The company also built homes in Seattle for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Boeing hydrofoils built during the 1970s included six Patrol Hydrofoil Missileships, the first of which was launched in 1974. The civilian version, the Boeing JETFOIL, launched the same year, entered service in Hong Kong a year later.

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