The Arlington Airport will be able to perform some needed maintenance to one of its taxiways thanks to a $1.1 million federal grant.
The money is coming from the Federal Aviation Administration.
“This was some discretionary dollars that the FAA decided to allocate to us,” said Kristin Banfield, communications manager for the city of Arlington.
“I think this time around they really wanted to focus on some of the smaller airports that help general aviation and rural areas,” she said.
The funds will be used to provide maintenance on one of the taxiways that airplanes at the airport use.
“This will be a 2020 project to help repave taxiway B at the airport,” said Banfield.
“They’ll grind it down on the pavement and put a new layer of asphalt on top of it,” she said.
Replacing the taxiway completely would cost more money in the long run than to perform periodic maintenance measures, said Banfield.
“It’s better to do some interim maintenance than to wait and have to do a complete rebuild of the taxiway,” she said.
This particular project has been on the airport staff’s mind for the last couple of years, said Banfield, and she said they were glad to receive the money to do it.
“This pavement has been in need of a replacement for quite some time now,” she said.
The city was prepared to budget for the project in the future but now has a little more flexibility.
“We’re extremely fortunate that we got this grant funding because that means we won’t have to spend money from our own Capital Airport fund,” said Banfield. “Now we can focus on some other projects and improvements for the airport instead."
Airplanes that are currently using the taxiway aren’t experiencing any problems with it, said Banfield, but because of the age of the taxiway and it’s current conditions there would likely be problems in the near future.
“They would have soon experienced some problems, which is another reason why this is necessary to get done, to prevent those issues in the future,” she said.
Airport and city staff were surprised at the grant money coming their way, said Banfield.
“This pot of money from the legislator was somewhat unexpected for us,” she said.
She said that members of Congress from the state helped advocate for the local airport to receive funds.
“We are thankful for our state delegation in Congress who worked to bring this grant money here,” said Banfield.