The Department of Transportation (DOT) announced today (Feb. 28) close to $1 billion in grants to support aviation infrastructure nationwide. While the bulk of the spending will go to airline airports and large-airport air traffic control facilities, general aviation and smaller airports are also called out as beneficiaries of the funding. The program, part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, provides for $1 billion per year for the next five years. In total, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law earmarks $25 billion toward rebuilding the U.S. airports and air traffic control facilities.
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg said, “Americans deserve the best airports in the world, and with demand for air travel surging back, this funding to improve the passenger experience couldn’t come at a more urgent time.” Deputy FAA Administrator A. Bradley Mims added, “Today’s funding doesn’t just improve airport terminals. It creates opportunities in communities large and small for good-paying jobs and a chance to be part of our country’s thriving aviation sector.”
“Many grants contain an element that will go to improving airport access in smaller communities,” according to the DOT press statement. Grants dedicated to improving aviation access to smaller communities include: $1.7 million to Clinton Regional Airport in Clinton, Missouri, to relocate the terminal building and reconfigure the road that provides access to the airport entrance; $950,000 to Ashley Municipal Airport in Ashley, North Dakota, for a new general aviation terminal building with a waiting area, flight-planning rooms and restrooms for passengers and flight crews; and $6 million to Rafael Hernandez Airport in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, to rehabilitate the existing 1942-vintage hangar that serves as the commercial terminal building—as well as adding a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facility to serve international operations.