Saturday, April 05, 2014

Grand Junction Regional Airport (KGJT) Construction Halted, Costs Hundreds of Jobs

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - In the past year the Grand junction Regional Airport has dealt with its fair share of hardships and controversy. Now, they're dealing with another setback, officially halting construction of the new terminal project. 

The Grand Junction Regional Airport Terminal Phase 1 Project was one of the largest projects being built on the Western Slope, and now the timeline for completion is unclear. That uncertainty is having a ripple effect amongst those who've been building it from the ground up.

While construction workers build structures that stand the test of time, their jobs aren't always as stable.

"It's disappointing when you think you have work in front of you and then all of a sudden it's cut out. It's little unnerving," said Nathan Rinderly, a construction worker with Upland Companies Inc.

Shaw Construction won the bid for the project. Clark Atkinson, president of Shaw, said, "There are hundreds of jobs that were being furnished by this project."

From hundreds to a handful now, after complications with a multimillion dollar grant from the FAA.

Sam Susuras, with the Airport Authority Board, said, "The contention was that the name of the building was incorrect and that use of some of the buildings room space was misnamed."

The Airport Authority Board voted to rescind the grant. Construction for the project began back in October and was supposed to be completed this summer. Now it could be months before the grant is approved, meaning construction won't be happening during the valuable summer months.

"Building is about 40 percent finished, it will have to remain that way until we have a new grant," said Susuras.

The new grant will have to be approved by the Airport Authority, Grand Junction City Council, Mesa County Commissioners and the FAA. A wait that will keep construction workers on the edge of their seats.

"Ya, we're picking up and this is the last load out of here," said Rinderly.

"There's just a lot of uncertainty that comes with a project of this size being shut down," Atkinson said.

They are trying remain hopeful that it won't be long until they finish what they started.

The matter is being held in court. The Airport Authority Board says they're looking forward to getting the litigation behind them so they can move forward and start being visionaries for the next 25 to 50 years.

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