White House Announces $201 Million Airport Lighting Upgrade Program

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The White House announced today (Sept. 26) that more than $201 million will go to new or reconstructed runway and taxiway lighting systems as part of the administration’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. During an event marking the new program at Denver International Airport, U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said, “We’re acting to improve lighting systems at 82 airports, an important part of keeping aircraft moving safely, no matter the time of day or weather.”

Airports getting funding for the improvements include: Denver International Airport—KDEN ($30.6 million for reconstructing runway and taxiway lighting systems); Rogue Valley International Airport—KMFR, Medford, Oregon ($3.4 million for lighting to indicate a temporarily closed runway, a new lighting vault, and reconstructing the Runway 14/32 lighting system); Boeing Field—KBFI, Seattle, Washington ($2.6 million for elevated runway guard lights); Dickinson/Theodore Roosevelt Regional Airport—KDIK, Dickinson, North Dakota ($2 million for replacement approach path identifier lights).

Click here for a full list of all airports receiving runway/taxiway lighting funding under the new program. The law introduces new airport lighting technology to many airports, including in-pavement Runway Status Lights to alert pilots that entering a runway is unsafe; Airport Surface Detection Equipment, Model X (ASDE-X), allowing air traffic controllers to track surface movement of aircraft and vehicles (a “sister system,” Airport Surface Surveillance Capability, is located at the country’s 43 largest airports); and ASDE-X Taxiway Arrival Prediction, which detects when pilot is lining up to land on a taxiway and signals controllers with visual and audible alerts.

Mark Phelps
Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. Maybe some day the FAA will throw a few more bucks at GA airfields. All our local muni airports haven’t built a T-hangar since the 1980’s. New and/or replacement T-hangars are on every local master plan, but remains a wish one day.

    Meanwhile we have multi-year wait lists for hangars. KSQL San Carlos get the prize as the backlog is 27 years!

    • No one is stopping the airports from building the hangars. Its not the governments responsibility to do so. I am sure if the rents were sufficient and the lease long enough the airport would gladly build the hangars. Most don’t want to spend that amount however.

      • Why would you be sure about that at all? More likely, the city wants to close the airport, not invest in it. All the leaders, being without any leadership ability, are happy to gamble their will not be blow back on them from closing the airport when the airport is later needed.

  2. “The White House announced today (Sept. 26) that more than $201 million will go to new or reconstructed runway and taxiway lighting systems as part of the administration’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.”

    I don’t think this thing’s completely operating like it was originally intended to.

    U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said, “We’re acting to improve lighting systems at 82 airports, an important part of keeping aircraft moving safely, no matter the time of day or weather.”

    I feel better already. Safe in any weather. Pete said so.

  3. My airport has a closed runway going back 10 years. Yet the city can afford to move a casino, but not fix an airport. And forget about hangar space. That’s for derelicts that only see the light of day when the doors open. They don’t move from their homes.

    • If the airport brought in as much money as the casino did, I am sure you would have all the runway space and hangars you wanted.

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