Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport in Weyers Cave is celebrating a double dose of good news this week.
The airport on Thursday will start nonstop flights to Chicago through SkyWest Airlines, according to Executive Director Greg Campbell. Campbell said Thursday marks the first day of flights going directly to Chicago without stopping in Lewisburg, West Virginia. That means all 50 seats on the Sky West Bombardier-manufactured Canadair Regional Jet CRJ200 will be available for Weyers Cave passengers, Campbell said.
Campbell is also joining airport managers across America in toasting the news that both houses of Congress have passed a five-year Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill. The passage assures federal funding for all kinds of airport needs across the country for the next five years.
“This is very timely since we wrapped up a master plan this spring and that is our road map for the next 10 to 15 years,” Campbell said. “Now we can plan accordingly and program with the FAA.”
Some of the upcoming projects for Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport include additional apron and hangar facilities to handle the traffic demands. And a few years down the road the airport is planning to some pavement rehabilitation. A current project is replacing the air field guidance signs at the airport.
The congressional reauthorization brings relief, Campbell said.
“For airports and the FAA, it is hard to program improvements when dealing with shorter bills,” he said. “It’s good to see [congressional action].”
The Alliance for Aviation Across America reacted to the passage of the reauthorization bill, saying it “will support ongoing funding of our airport and aviation infrastructure, help to safeguard passengers, address our critical pilot and workforce shortage,” as well as preserving air access for communities of all sizes.
The Alliance for Aviation Across America is a nonprofit, nonpartisan coalition representing businesses, agricultural groups, small airports, elected officials and business and aviation groups.