A new airport director was appointed by the Airport Authority Board last week to the Grand Junction Regional Airport, ending a year-long vacancy followed by an FBI investigation, as well as the firing and resignation of previous directors.
Kip Turner is the third airport director in about two years.
Turner said his first task will be to make some much needed improvements, including renovation of the east commercial ramp, which was originally constructed in 1978 and handles about 20 commercial flights per day.
“It’s very active and very busy,” said Turner.
Turner said a $3.3 million grant is going to help replace the 33,000-square-foot concrete ramp, which is full cracks and broken sections.
“We are staying a head of the curve, making sure our facilities are in good order, compliant, and the way they need to be a good functioning, commercial and public airport for the next 20, 30, 40 years,” said Turner.
Travelers who use the airport regularly said the changes are welcome.
“People would definitely love to fly out of here more rather than travel to Denver,” said Ian Obanion, a regular traveler.
Turner said the multiple-phase project will make the Grand Junction Regional Airport a first-class airport.
“I think it’s a great community,” said Turner. “I think the Grand Junction airport is poised—the sky is the limit.”
The bidding process for construction companies will start August 3. Once a company is chosen and the work begins, the project will take about 120 days to complete.
The three-phase project is part of a larger 10-year improvement project for runways and the terminal.