LIMA — The Lima Allen County Airport will have a newly surfaced runway next year thanks to a grant from the Federal Aviation Administration totaling $4.25 million. Accepting the grant was approved during a special meeting of Allen County Commissioners Friday.
The airport board had applied for the grant in April after it was determined that the runway was too deteriorated to simply patch.
“We’re also building a snow removal building it there, and that’s about a $500,000 project,” board president John Newman said. “So we’ve got almost $5 million of federal funds invested in the airport.”
The runway resurfacing project, which will begin in spring and cause the airport to be shut down for four to six weeks, came just in time. Waiting any longer would have eventually led to the entire runway having to be reconstructed, with such a project costing twice as much, according to Newman.
In order to qualify for the grant, the airport had contribute 5 percent of the grant total, which would equate to $213,000.
“We were able to fund that ourselves without having to ask the county for any capital funding,” Newman said. “We had some pipeline easements with Marathon Oil that provided the wherewithal for us to do this.”
Newman estimates that once completed, the new runway should put the airport in a good position for the next 20 years.
“We’re very pleased that we are able to do this and contribute to the county,” he said.
Reach Craig Kelly at 567-242-0390 or on Twitter @Lima_CKelly.