The Jacksonville Airport is looking to expand. Shastin Saxer, Manager of the Airport, outlines the expansion to the hangar coming next year. Saxer explains the projects: “Presently, we have two major construction projects going on out here at the airport. The first is the construction of a new T hangar unit. That’s going to be on an existing concrete pad that’s located just south of our southernmost hangar. Currently, there are 28 individual T hangar units at the airport. We also have a community hangar and a couple of maintenance hangars. This new unit is going to add 10 additional spots for aircraft storage. That’s going to lead to increased revenue for the airport through additional leases and fuel sales. Right now, our airport engineer, Jeff Olson with Hutchison Engineering has completed the majority of the plans for this project. We are currently waiting a project environmental review by IDOT’s division of aeronautics over in Springfield. Once these reviews are completed, we will ultimately be able to advertise for bids on it. Right now, we are looking at construction to begin in the spring or early summer next year.”
Saxer says that the airport can currently accommodate large executive jets: “We can handle fairly large aircraft now. Our longest runway is 5000 feet and we have a 4000-foot crosswind runway. We can accommodate larger executive jets and things of that nature now. We have areas in the airport layout plan that if a business was looking to come to Jacksonville and expand, they could use the airport as an operations base for that – we have areas that the airport authority would absolutely would want to engage in discussions with those individuals and see what we could bring to the airport and to Jacksonville. As far as the things that we get in and out of the airport now, we can handle the larger executive-type aircraft.”
Saxer says that the Terminal at the airport is the second project that is currently in progress: “We had a minor repair project out here and that’s when we discovered that we had problems with the windows allowing water to penetrate into the terminal. The current windows out here now are approximately 50 years old. We are planning on replacing the entire store-front window system along with some doors here in the terminal. There is going to be some grading work around the outside of the building in an attempt to mitigate some of the other water issues we have, as well. We are just looking at some improvements and updates on some things that have a lot of age.”
Saxer says that most of the costs of the projects are coming through grants from the federal government with a 10% local matching funds to pay for the improvement projects.
To learn more about what’s happening at the airport, the next airport authority public meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 12th at 5:30Pm at the Terminal Building located at 1956 Baldwin Road, just north of Jacksonville off of Route 78.