The DOT’s aviation program manager, Shane Wright, says aviation program funds safety, planning, and airport development projects at 24 airports.
“It covers pretty much the whole spectrum of things at the airports — from weather information to working on the pavement to building repairs — it covers a lot of good projects,” Wright says. He says the airports compete for the money and must include a minimum of 15 percent of the cost of the project.
Wright says every project is evaluated based a prioritization system that includes the need, the type of work being done. He says the size and number of people the airports service is also considered. Wright says there are usually more requests than money.
“I think this year just looking at the airport improvement program projects, I think there was about $1.9 million that we weren’t able to get to,” Wright says. Wright says much like the state’s highways, the winter weather creates the need for maintenance at airports.
“The airports go through those same freeze-thaw situations that we see on the highways, and there is always ongoing needs and continuing issues that they need to continue looking at,” according to Wright. You can go to the DOT’s website to find a complete list of the projects.