Saturday, July 22, 2017

Feds grant Keokuk Municipal Airport (KEOK) money for repairs

U.S. Representative Dave Loebsack from Iowa visits with airport manager Greg Gobble. 




KEOKUK, Ia. (WGEM) -

Residents will start seeing some construction at Keokuk's airport in the coming months.

Local private pilots and businesses use Keokuk's municipal airport so they have a place to land. However, there's one problem. Trees are starting to take over the runway. That's why the Federal Aviation Administration is granting nearly $400,000 to clean it up. Without it, officials say the F-A-A would have to address the safety hazard by shortening the runway.

Congressman Dave Loebsack said at the airport on Friday that the government grant shows commitment to aviation in small communities.

"Airports all over America are really important for economic development," said U.S. Rep Dave Loebsack (D) Iowa. "And certainly in a smaller community, like Keokuk, this airport is absolutely critical."

"The Iowa delegation has always seen a need for aviation, and especially as Iowa's a rural state," Airport Manager Greg Gobble said. "But we want to be connected to the rest of the world, economic development wise and plus convenience for the citizen." 

The airport will be working with local landowners to remove the trees this fall. They will have to contend with concerns about the habitat of the endangered Indiana bat , but officials say that's standard when removing trees and the project is expected to be completed in a year.

Watch video: http://www.wgem.com

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