The Eastern West Virginia Regional Airport Authority was recently awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Aviation Administration.
The Eastern West Virginia Regional Airport Authority was one of three West Virginia airports that received funding from the FAA, according to an Aug. 3 announcement from the offices of senators Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito.
The Airport Authority will be using its award of $311,288 to update the airport’s existing master plan, which chairman Rick Wachtel said has not been updated in 20 years.
Wachtel said Delta Airport Consultants was selected to assist the Airport Authority in preparing and updating its master plan after a bid process. He said the funding from the FAA will cover 90 percent of the cost of the consulting. The West Virginia Aeronautics Commission and the Airport Authority will each contribute five percent of the remaining cost.
“(The Eastern West Virginia Regional Airport Authority) applies for funding for different projects almost every year,” Wachtel said in a telephone interview Wednesday evening. “This particular funding is for our master plan update. A lot has changed in Berkeley County in 20 years, and we need to look ahead and plan for the future.”
Wachtel said the plan will address the demand for more T-hangars, small hangars which house a single-engine or small twin engine aircraft. Wachtel said local pilots pay to store their planes in the T-hangars, so the existing ones are full. Additionally, if the Airport Authority’s proposed international shipping project with Intermodal Holdings comes to fruition, Wachtel said the plan will need to address the feasibility of building a ramp for freight deliveries. He said the potential resurfacing or lengthening of the airport’s existing runways and taxi ways is also something that will be examined in the plan update.
Morgantown Municipal-Walter L. Bill Hart Field received $135,000 from the FAA for the acquisition of a new displacement plow to keep the airport serviceable in snowy weather. The Buckhannon-Upshur Airport Authority received $133,957 in FAA funding for the removal of tree obstructions in its Runway 11 approach area, as well as the purchase of 7.91 acres of land for a construction project.
Staff writer Mary Stortstrom can be reached at 304-263-8931 ext. 138 or www.twitter.com/mstortstromJN.