Carson Airport won't get new runway this year

Carson City Airport runway reconstruction will likely be delayed until 2002.

Plans to rebuild the runway this year were grounded last week as airport officials learned federal funding for the $7 million to $10 million project was not immediately available.

"That's a pretty good bet that we will not be building the runway this year," said airport attorney Steve Tackes.

Airport officials had hoped to start runway construction in August and have a new runway in place by November.

The Carson City Airport Authority does have a $3.4 million Federal Aviation Administration grant to rebuild the runway at its present location, but the authority two months ago decided to realign the runway. This more than doubled the cost.

Rebuilding the runway in the current location would not meet FAA specifications because the taxiway is too close to the runway, airport attorney Steve Tackes said.

Airport officials last week visited the FAA Airports District office in Burlingame, Calif., with the hopes of additional grant money to build a new runway with the east end shifted about 300 feet to the north.

"They urged us to proceed with completing our master plan and then come back to them with a new grant application," Tackes said. "They want to find a way to help us."

He said master plan work, which includes the new runway, will likely take another two to three months. The master plan would need to be approved by the Carson City Board of Supervisors before the Airport Authority could apply for a new runway grant.

Tackes said if the authority applies for a new grant later this year, the money would not be available until the last part of 2001. Construction would follow in summer 2002.

"We need a short term solution," Tackes said.

A new runway is needed because the runway has cracks too large to repair adequately.

Runway matters will be discussed at the Airport Authority meeting at 6 p.m. Thursday at the El Aero Services conference room, 2101 Arrowhead Drive.


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