A news service is reporting that Boeing Co. is planning to take its long-delayed 787 Dreamliner passenger jet on its inaugural test flight around Dec. 22.

Dow Jones Newswires today attributed the timing of the flight to “a person familiar with the situation.”

Boeing has sold more than 840 787s but has yet to take the lightweight twin-engine plane on its first check ride. The plane is more than two years behind schedule.

To help get the program back on track, Boeing is building a new assembly line for the jet at Charleston International Airport. An invitation-only ground-breaking ceremony is set for Friday morning.

The plane is now assembled in Everett, Wash., with components made all over the world.

In its most recent update, Boeing said it would fly the 787 by the end of 2009.