US transportation secretary Elaine L Chao has announced that the Department of Transportation is to award US$478m in airport infrastructure grants to 232 airports in 43 states.
This is the fourth allotment of the total US$3.18bn in Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Airport Improvement Program (AIP) funding for airports across the USA.
Selected projects include the maintenance of terminals, taxiways and aprons, runway reconstruction and rehabilitation, and construction of firefighting facilities. The construction and equipment supported by this funding increase the airports’ safety, emergency response capabilities and capacity, and could support further economic growth and development within each airport’s region.
Airports can receive a certain amount of AIP entitlement funding each year based on activity levels and project needs. If their capital project needs exceed their available entitlement funds, the FAA can supplement their entitlements with discretionary funding.
Among the airports awarded grants for the improvement of their terminal buildings are: Palm Springs International (US$9.5m); Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport (US$3.5m); and Savannah/Hilton Head International (US$4.2m).
Airport infrastructure in the USA, with 3,332 airports and 5,000 paved runways, supports economic competitiveness and improves quality of life. According to the FAA’s most recent economic analysis, US civil aviation accounts for US$1.6tn in economic activity and supports nearly 11 million jobs.