Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission has approved more than $142 million in airport infrastructure projects, including two at Enid Woodring Regional Airport.

The projects all are part of OAC’s airport construction program for fiscal years 2020-2024.

The two Woodring projects total just more than $3 million.

The first, which includes funding for FY 2022 and FY 2023, is $1.91 million to reconstruct runway 13/31. The runway is showing signs of weathering and cracking, according to OAC.

“The pavement is at a point where it is no longer cost effective to continue to rehabilitate it and it is at a point where reconstruction is required,” according to OAC.

The second project, with funding scheduled from FY 2024 and FY 2025, is $1.1 million to rehabilitate runway 17/35 and taxiway A and install LED runway lights and guidance signs.

“The pavement is at a point where it is more cost effective to rehabilitate than to let it deteriorate until reconstruction is required. Rehabilitation will consist of joint seal and spall repair,” according to OAC.

Other projects in Northwest Oklahoma on the plan are:

• Alva Regional Airport, $2.17 million to rehabilitate the parallel taxiway system and install LED taxiway lights.

• Fairview Municipal Airport, $2.17 million for construction of a parallel taxiway system due to increased traffic.

• Kingfisher Municipal Airport, $400,000 to reconstruct the taxi lanes and apron area.

• Christman Airfield in Okeene, $225,000 to crack seal and seal coat the runway, connecting taxiway and apron pavements.

• Watonga Regional Airport, $2.17 million to reconstruct runaway 17/35 and the connecting taxiways and install LED runway lights.

• Waynoka Municipal Airport, $300,000 to conduct pavement maintenance of the runway, connecting taxiway and apron.

• West Woodward Airport, $1.5 million to build a new terminal building.

OAC oversees development of a statewide system of airports, encourages aeronautical safety and advancement, and coordinates activities with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to develop a national airport system.

Through its program, OAC determines the airport projects that will be constructed at the 104 general aviation airports that are part of the state system and how they will be funded. Projects are prioritized based on safety, preservation, standards and capacity. Oklahoma is a channeling state, which means OAC determines the airport projects that will be funded with federal and state funds.

The construction program is based on anticipated funding levels that are determined from state and federal allocations for airport development in the state. Although the state has a sizable investment, $22.8 million over five years, it only accounts for 16% of the overall total.

“The Aeronautics Commission does not receive any appropriated dollars from the Legislature. The state’s investment in the airport system is funded by the taxes and fees paid by aircraft owners and pilots that use Oklahoma’s airports,” Victor Bird, aeronautics director.

Seventy-five projects at airports within the state system are included in the approved program, with the majority involving pavement work of some kind, such as the rehabilitation of a runway or taxiway. There also is a $1 million statewide effort for the replacement and installation of AWOS (Automated Weather Observation Systems) that will improve the safety of each airport by providing pilots with accurate, real-time weather information.

OAC also is renewing its focus on the funding of lighting systems at airportsP.

“We’ve spent the last 15 years really focusing on our safety and standards improvements, as well as bringing up our pavement conditions to acceptable levels,” said Grayson Ardies, deputy director. “This has led to our lighting and electrical systems to age a bit more than we would like. This renewed focus on lighting will ensure 100% functionality during all weather conditions and times of day at our airports.”

Story provided by Enid News & Eagle