Sunday, January 29, 2012

Dubois Municipal Airport (U25) received fuel tanks courtesy of Wyoming Business Council grant; economic and safety benefits result.

Story and photos by June Bonasera, County 10 News

The Dubois Municipal Airport received delivery of two aviation fuel tanks this week that will allow planes to re-fuel with Jet A fuel and 100 octane low-lead aviation gasoline. The new fuel tanks are thanks to a $249,000 Business Ready Grant as a Community Readiness Project through the Wyoming Business Council. The purpose of the grant is to help communities short of infrastructure to prepare for future business development. An additional $15,000 was provided by the Town of Dubois as matching funds for the grant.

WBC West Central Region director Roger Bower was enthusiastic in his support of the project stating. “This is an enormous improvement and opportunity for the tourism side of Dubois ‘economy,” he said. “By no longer having to fly into Jackson, rent a car and drive into Dubois if you own or utilize a plane, this has the potential to change the dynamics of the town.”

Dubois Municipal Airport Manager Tim Schell was equally enthusiastic about the airport improvement from both a safety and convenience point of view. “As a pilot, safety is always the number one concern, first and foremost. Dubois sits at the bottom of one the most difficult passes to navigate and the ability to stop in Dubois if weather conditions demand it, and be able to get out again with a full fuel tank is a critical safety improvement,” Schell said. He also said the new fuel tanks will be a great convenience. “As a destination airport, being able to re-fuel makes it easier for folks who have second homes here as well as provide the opportunity for people to attend meetings and conferences and vacation in Dubois.”

Installation, inspection and DEQ approval is scheduled to be completed on February 17th and the tanks will be operational shortly thereafter.

“Installation of the fuel tanks is an essential first step in the entire airport improvement plan underway,” Schell said. “A 30 percent preliminary design for the new Dubois airport configuration has been completed, with approval by FAA, engineers and town officials pending.” Schell estimated 2 to 3 additional months to complete the design after approval.

The Dubois airport is the highest elevation airport in the state, at 7,272 feet. The runway at the 211 acre airport site is just three miles from town and measures 6,100 feet long. A total of 12 aircraft are based at the airport, including one helicopter and one ultra-light.


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