By Jennifer Dewitt
The Quad-City International Airport has received a $2.88 million federal transportation grant to expand its snow removal equipment facility.
Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., announced that the Department of Transportation has awarded a Federal Aviation Administration grant to the airport’s governing body. The Rock Island County Metropolitan Airport Authority was notified late Tuesday.
According to Bryan Johnson, the airport’s assistant aviation director, the airport plans to add 25,000 square feet to its existing 30,000-square-foot equipment facility. The structure, located near the airport’s main entrance, is no longer large enough to house all of the airport’s snow equipment, he said.
“As the airport has grown and expanded with more runway and taxiways, the requirement to remove snow and other contaminants from the airfield increases,” he said. In turn, “it requires us to have more equipment.”
Expanding the building will allow staff to store the larger fleet in one location.
“They are really thrilled to get it under one roof,” Johnson said, adding, “It’s tucked away in every nook and cranny we can find space.”
The first phase of the project will expand the actual building, and a second phase will involve a new parking lot, ramp and site work. The grant will pay for 90 percent of the building expansion’s cost.
The airport is expecting a second grant next year to cover the majority of the second phase, estimated at $1.3 million.
The entire project will cost more than $5 million. The state and the airport will each pay 5 percent of the project.
He said construction will begin this fall and be completed in about a year