June 27, 2016

Intermittent clouds

Dayton airport wants $4.4 million for upgrades

DAYTON — One of Ohio’s larger airports is seeking $4.4 million in extra federal funding to help create more room for airlines to park their planes overnight and tear down a concourse that has been idle for almost 20 years.

Dayton’s aviation director, Terrence Slaybaugh, said that having more space for airlines to park planes for morning departures would be good for current and future operations at the Dayton International Airport, the Dayton Daily News reported. Demolishing the concourse also would eliminate the cost of maintaining an idle facility, he said.

Money for the upgrades would come from additional federal funds, plus the airport’s $2.7 million in regular annual support from the Federal Aviation Administration. The city of Dayton would chip in $375,000 from the airport’s capital reserve fund, Slaybaugh said.

The estimated $7.5 million project would include razing Concourse D, which once was the home of a Piedmont Airlines hub and is no longer needed, Slaybaugh said. The airport’s two active concourses have room to handle expanded air service, and bringing Concourse D into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act would require extensive renovation and installation of escalators, he said.

Dayton airport officials have made their request to the FAA, but the availability of the agency’s discretionary funding is subject to congressional appropriations and competition from other airports also seeking project money.

FAA spokeswoman Elizabeth Cory would not comment on Dayton’s chances of getting the extra federal funding, the newspaper reported.

Slaybaugh said that the airport could start the project later or do it in stages if the additional FAA money isn’t approved.

About $9.5 million in capital improvement projects already planned for the airport in 2012 include restroom renovation and expansion, carpet replacement and roof repairs at the terminal building and improved signage inside and outside of the terminal.