Tuesday, July 23, 2013

McCharen Field (M83), West Point, Mississippi: Improvements at airport ready to take off

 WEST POINT, Miss. (WTVA) -- Pilots and passengers will notice a few enhancements when planes taxi into McCharen Field. 

Through a grant from the Federal Aviation Administration the airport will offer new ammenities.

"Yeah, anytime you got modernization at an airport, it's going to attract new business. Also, it's going to attract pilots because of the safety factor of a modernized airport," said Kevin Wylie, corporate pilot.

Plans call for the nearly $254,000 project to extend a new sewer service to the infrastructure at the airport which includes three hangars and a pilot lounge area.

Plus, it will connect a business located on Airport Road to the city's sewer service.

The change is expected to save the city money as it will no longer require the septic tanks to be pumped out and have the waste trucked away.

"You provide accurate sewer service instead of the antiquated septic tank system and portable treatment that you have one site with buildings and businesses," said Randy Jones airport manager.

Once the force main is installed and fully operational, not only does it open the door for the city to do further developments inside the airport, but it also opens up an avenue to have commercial development around the peremiter of the airport.

"Now, we'll have a circular ability where we can provide water and sewer service 360 degrees around the airport," added Jones.

"Any kind of infrastructure that they do to the airport is always going to help as far as bringing industry in," said Wylie.

The work is expected to begin sometime in September.

The Federal Aviation Administration is picking up 95 percent of the tab.

The rest of the cost will be picked up from the state and from the Mississippi Department of Transportation.

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