By Maggie Kenworthy
WARSAW — During the Warsaw Board of Aviation Commissioners meeting held Tuesday, July 13, the board heard good news regarding the ongoing powerline project’s grant application.
Mary Kerstein, CHA Project Manager, reported that the airport received the grant for the project. This grant was submitted to the FAA in November for the amount of $7,598,415.
“I know it’s been a long time coming,” said Kerstein. “This is just the first step in getting the powerlines lowered, is getting that grant from the FAA.”
The next step of the project will be meeting with American Electric Power to set up an agreement for the contract. From there, AEP will continue to design the new powerlines, which are currently around 60 percent designed.
This design process is expected to finish up around fall, with some foundational work possible during the cold months. Most of the project’s construction will take place next year.
“This is a big deal,” said Warsaw Mayor Joe Thallemer.
Kerstein explained that the project includes replacing two towers and adding three new ones. This will lower the power lines so that aircraft can fly into the airport at a lower altitude. She noted that the power line towers would be of a different style than what is currently out there, and would consist of an umbrella-like design at the top.
“Thank you for getting us to this point,” said Board President Jay Rigdon. “We have been looking to get past this hurdle for quite some time now.”
Kerstein also announced that the airport received another round of CARES Act funding in the amount of $59,000. This money is funded through the FAA and can go towards whatever the airport needs.
Airport Manager Nick King announced that current fuel usage is up around 13,000 gallons from the same time last year. He said that fuel usage is slowly going up.
A pay request in the amount of $16,947.90 to Robinson Construction was approved for the Zimmer-Biomet hangar door project. The foundation for the door has been poured.
The next meeting of the Warsaw Board of Aviation Commissioners will be held at 5:15 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 10.