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Mineta Announces $30.3M in Grants for Northeast Airports

Fri September 26, 2003 - Northeast Edition

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta recently announced grants totaling $30.3 million to enhance safety and security at airports in Philadelphia, PA; Norfolk, VA; New York State; and Maryland.

The Philadelphia International Airport will receive a $6-million grant that will provide funding to install the airport’s surface movement guidance and control system. The project will include installation of visual navigation aids, taxiway lighting, runway guard lights and stop bars.

Airports in New York State will receive a grant totaling $16.3 million.

The airports receiving grants are:

• Albany International Airport — $6 million to extend a runway and runway safety area.

• New York LaGuardia Airport — $4 million to improve the runway safety area.

• New York John F. Kennedy International Airport — $2.3 million to upgrade runway lighting.

• Westchester County Airport — $1.5 million to enhance security.

• Greater Rochester International Airport — $2.5 million to construct a taxiway.

The Maryland airports that share in the grants are the Frederick Municipal Airport receiving $1.3 million and the Richard A. Henson Field in Hagerstown receiving $205,000.

The Frederick airport will use the funds to remove obstructions from approaches to the runway. The Hagerstown airport will use the funds to enhance security.

“I have enjoyed working with Secretary Mineta and appreciate his leadership to implement President Bush’s commitment to improve the transportation infrastructure that will create more jobs in both Frederick and Washington counties,” said Rep. Roscoe Bartlett.

“These grants are great news. The $1.3-million federal grant for Frederick Airport to remove runway obstructions will enhance the safety and efficiency of operations.

“The $205,000 federal grant for Hagerstown’s airport will improve safety. That is a win-win that will protect passengers and cargo customers while increasing demand for more flights in and out of the airport,” Barlett added.

In addition, a grant of $6.5 million will enhance safety and security at the Norfolk, VA, International Airport.

“This grant will help the economy and residents of Hampton Roads by protecting our citizens and visitors while giving our region’s economy some room to grow,” said Rep. Ed Schrock. “I am grateful the Department of Transportation has recognized this need.”

The funds will support security enhancements at the airport. In addition, the money will allow the airport to relocate bald eagles found near the site of a planned runway to protect the eagles and avoid future bird-strike hazards to aircraft. The relocation will be carried out in consultation with the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and state resource agencies.

“President Bush and I remain dedicated to building a safe, secure and reliable transportation system that operates efficiently, strengthens the economy and improves our quality of life,” Mineta said.

“Safety is the Bush administration’s top transportation priority, and protecting and improving our transportation infrastructure is of central importance to all Americans. This investment will help [these] airports maintain the highest levels of safety and security in the years ahead.”

The grant comes from the Airport Improvement Program of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration.