Vienna airport’s taxi project is delayed

VIENNA – The Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport will shelve a plan to construct a new aircraft taxi lane after losing $30,000 in federal funds earmarked for design work on the project.

The airport’s Director of Aviation Dan Dickten said the project would have created a new traffic lane for aircraft to taxi past parked aircraft and the passenger terminal, heading to the airport runway. The taxi lane also would have allowed access to rear entrance to planned new T-hangars at the airport.

That project will be delayed until 2014 or 2015, he said.

“If we can’t design the project, we can’t build the T-hangars,” Dickten said.

Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Elizabeth Cory said the funds, originally allocated as part of 2009 airport improvement program grant, or AIP, were withdrawn because they expire after four years and cannot be transferred to another airport project.

Dickten said Wednesday that he remains hopeful for future AIP funding grants being considered for next year based on reports that they may exceed amounts allocated in past years.

In other airport business, the board that oversees airport operations voted to appropriate up to $200,000 in funds for construction of a new rental car wash facility.

The airport in March added Enterprise Rent-A-Car as a second rental car provider, in addition to Avis / Budget for on-site rentals.

At the time, officials estimated with the agreements and Hertz providing off-site services, the airport should see a $34,139 revenue increase. The new two-year rental car agreements approved in March included a $1.50 increase to the concession facility charge, which were to be used to help pay for a car wash, Dickten said at the time.

Other funds for the car wash project will come from contingency funds remaining from a 2011 bond project and the airport’s general fund.