Officials postpone hangar expansion

The fencing project is needed to keep out wildlife.
VIENNA -- A project to expand hangar space at the Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport will take a back burner for a year or so until additional fencing is erected at the airport.
Consultant Duane Johnson of R.W. Armstrong of Cleveland told members of the Western Reserve Port Authority on Wednesday that the Federal Aviation Administration is insisting that the fencing project be completed before it will allocate money to aid the hangar expansion.
Much of the airport property near the terminal has received new 10-foot fencing, but an additional 20,000 feet of fencing will be completed in 2007 at a cost of 2 million, Johnson said. It is being built with FAA funding.
The idea for building four "T-hangars" on the airport property was proposed in 2005. The hangars will house privately owned aircraft. Armstrong said his company is preparing to put out a request for proposals next year to have companies bid on building and operating the hangars, but it will probably be 2008 before they will be built.
Johnson said money needed from the FAA to build taxiways to serve the T-hangars will not be available until 2008 -- after the fencing is completed. The fencing is needed to keep out wildlife, he said.
New charge
In other business, the board learned that R.W. Armstrong is carrying out the steps to get FAA approval of a Passenger Facility Charge of 4.50 per ticket, and it will be in place probably Feb. 1 or March 1.
A PFC is charged by the airlines and turned over to the airport to improve airport passenger facilities. Officials have said the money would be used to build restrooms in the area inside the security station and other improvements.
The board also learned that about 150 people attended the last FAA safety seminar and fly-in at the airport Oct. 7.
About 85 pilots participated in the safety seminar. Twenty-nine children participated in a Young Eagle program in which kids get their first plane ride. Nine children participated in the Discover Flight program in which young aspiring pilots get to take over the controls of a plane. Both youth programs were sponsored by the Warren chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association.

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