FAA Invests $766M to Build Safer, More Sustainable Airports

  • More than 250 grants awarded to airports across US

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) awarded more than $766 million in grants to build safer, more sustainable and more accessible airports across the United States. The funding from the fifth round of FY 2021 Airport Improvement Program grants will pay for projects at 279 airports in 44 states plus Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. View an interactive map with all the awards.

FAA Administrator, Steve Dickson, said:

These grants will improve safety, sustainability and accessibility at airports across our country.

Thanks to President Biden’s American Rescue Plan, the projects announced today will not have to pay the usual local match given the nearly $100 million provided in the law.

Today’s grants include:

Increase Safety, Expand Capacity

  • Adirondack Regional Airport, Saranac Lake, N.Y.: $2.8 million to rehabilitate 6,573 feet of the existing Runway 5/23 pavement. This project will install three new pavement condition sensors to help the airport determine when it needs to remove snow and ice, and to help with accurately reporting pavement conditions.
  • Alexandria International Airport, Alexandria, La.: $3.9 million for runway extension, earthwork, and drainage improvements. Extending Runway 18/36 will ensure the airport can maintain existing services and support increased cargo operations, and is expected to generate permanent jobs for the community.
  • Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, Glen Burnie, Md.: $12.2 million to move Taxiway F to meet current FAA design standards. The grant funds the first 1,400-foot-long phase of the project.
  • Long Island MacArthur Airport, Islip, N.Y.: $6.9 million to repair Taxiways E and F to maintain the structural integrity of the pavement, and rebuild taxiway edge lighting and airfield guidance signs to meet FAA standards.
  • Norfolk International Airport, Norfolk, Va.: $3 million to repair Runway 5/23 and its associated lighting system to maintain the structural integrity of the pavement and enhance safe airfield operations during low visibility conditions.

Build More Sustainable Airports:

  • Great Falls International Airport, Great Falls, Mont.: $4.8 million to construct a deicing pad and facilities to keep deicing materials separate from storm water. The new infrastructure will improve operational efficiency by allowing aircraft deicing at a location away from the gate.
  • Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport, Louisville, Ky.: $10.6 million to install a geothermal system in the terminal building to improve the airport’s energy efficiency. The airport will heat and cool the 400,000 square-foot terminal building with the new geothermal system, which will replace three existing boilers. The geothermal system will significantly reduce pollutants, such as ozone, carbon monoxide, and particulate matter associated with the burning of natural gas.

Increase Access for Rural, Remote Communities:

  • Atqasuk Edward Burnell Sr. Memorial Airport, Atqasuk, Alaska: $20.7 million to repair the gravel pavement on Runway 6/24, the aircraft parking area, the taxiway to the parking area, and other airfield improvements. The project enhances the safety of airport operations and extends the life of the airport infrastructure. Atqasuk, a remote community in northern Alaska, is solely dependent on aviation for the transportation of people, goods, and critical services.

Increase Accessibility for Individuals with Disabilities:

  • Charleston AFB/International Airport, Charleston, S.C.: $84,000 to buy a passenger lift device to help passengers with disabilities board and deplane aircraft to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990.
  • Wilmington International Airport, Wilmington, N.C.: $16.4 million to expand the terminal building and apron to accommodate increased use of the terminal facilities. The expanded terminal will have additional concourse and gate seating, new restaurant and retail space, and expanded TSA checkpoint screening areas. The new areas will be ADA accessible and meet all ADA requirements.
  • Fort Wayne International Airport, Fort Wayne, Ind.: $6.1 million to expand the terminal building and improve the existing ticketing area and passenger gates to increase passenger capacity. The terminal expansion will provide a service-animal relief area, lactation rooms, and children’s play area. It also will meet ADA requirements by purchasing technology called a hearing loop, which allows people with compatible/enabled hearing aid devices to hear the gate announcements in their hearing aids.

The Airport Improvement Program receives approximately $3.2 billion in funding each year. The FAA plans to award more than 1,800 grants in 2021. A complete listing of grants (PDF) and AIP Grants Data by State is on the FAA website.

This article was originally published by the U.S. Department of Transportation / Federal Aviation Administration.


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