Saturday, July 16, 2016

Edgeley Municipal (51D), Carrington Municipal (46D) get money for airport improvements -Kathryn's Report

Carrington and Edgeley are two beneficiaries of recent Federal Aviation Administration grants to improve the airports at the two cities.

Edgeley Municipal Airport will receive $684,572, while Carrington Municipal Airport will get $208,800 from the FAA.

Edgeley Municipal Airport will use the funds to put a new layer of asphalt over the current runway in order to fix the many cracks in the current runway. On a scale of 0-100 with zero being the best condition and 100 the worst, the Edgeley airport was given a rating of 67 by the North Dakota Aeronautics Commission, according to Director Kyle Wanner.

"There are holes all over the pavement," Wanner said.

The cracks in the pavement can create loose rocks that fly into a plane's propellers, which can create a hazard for pilots coming in, he said.

The rejuvenation project at the Edgeley airport will cost almost $700,000, however, the federal government is picking up 90 percent of the cost, Wanner said. The state will pay 5 percent and the local airport authority will pay the other 5 percent. The federal funding comes from taxes collected from the sale of aviation fuel.

Steve Aldinger, senior project engineer for Interstate Engineering, said the Edgeley airport was overdue for repairs. Interstate Engineering is the engineering firm that handles the projects at both airports.

"There hasn't been significant work on the pavement since the airport was built 15 years ago," Aldinger said.

Aldinger said the projects would be impossible to do without federal funding.

Rick Gutschmidt, Edgeley Airport Authority member, said the improvements will provide an economic impact to the Edgeley community from pilots who have planes and spray crops on land. Wanner said an economic impact study by the Aeronautics Commission showed the airport brings an estimated $1.6 million in local revenue to Edgeley.

Gutschmidt said the Edgeley Airport Authority has a good relationship with the state and the FAA.

"The state is good to North Dakota aviation," he said.

Carrington Municipal Airport received just over $200,000 to reseal the pavement including cracks that have come from wear and tear on the airfield. Wanner said the last time a major project was done at Carrington airport was in 1998. The Carrington airport is not in as bad of shape as the Edgeley airport but hasn't had any major renovations since 1998, according to Wanner. The airport scored a 38 on the pavement rating, he said.

Steve Klein, chairman of the Carrington Airport Authority, said many planes stop for fuel at the airport to refuel since the airport is able to sell it at a lower rate than other airports. He said the airport is a huge boost to the local economy and is grateful for the federal funding, which allows the city "to maintain and keep a strong public airport which adds a lot of commerce to our community."

The Carrington airport brings in about $1.6 million in annual local revenue, according to a study done by the Aeronautics Commission.

Original article can be found here:

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