Fort Dodge airport to get $1.6 M for new hangars

Federal COVID relief money will be used

Nearly $1.6 million now available from the state government will pay for building new hangars at Fort Dodge Regional Airport.

The airport is eligible for $1,585,761 from the Iowa Commercial Aviation Infrastructure Fund thanks to $100 million of federal COVID-19 relief money deposited in that fund..

Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Wednesday that the $100 million would be divided between the state’s eight airports that have commercial flights.

”The announcement from the governor could not come at a more critical time for us,” said Rhonda Chambers, the local airport’s director of aviation. ”We are so pleased that this one-time federal infrastructure funds allows us to construct new hangars.”

The airport has nine hangars. The newest one was built in 2018, but many of the others date to the 1960s and 1970s.

Last year, a structural engineer was hired to examine four of those older hangars, which collectively house 26 planes. Chambers said only one of them received a rating of good. The others were rated as fair, poor and unsatisfactory. She said the planes in the oldest of those hangars are being relocated, and the building will eventually be demolished.

The airport has a plan to build three 60-by-60-foot hangars. A second phase of that plan includes four more 60-by-60-foot hangars.

”New hangars can attract new businesses to our region who utilize aviation in their business plan,” Chambers said. ”Aircraft hangars are also needed for transit business aircraft as those companies visit our region for new development opportunities or retainage of existing businesses.”

The state government is not going to just send all eight airports a check for their share of the money. Airports will have to submit applications for the funding by May 25. Once the applications are approved, they must have contractors hired to do their projects by Dec. 15, 2023, and all work must be done by June 30, 2026.


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