New Dayton airport construction work this year to hit $35M in value

Dayton International Airport will launch at least $35 million in new construction projects this year, work that could last up to 18 months, fueled mostly by federal funds.

The airport hopes to get in all about $14 million in Federal Aviation Administration funds for runway and aircraft ramp work this year, said Terrence Slaybaugh, the city of Dayton’s aviation director. The city is also designing a $4.5 million sanitary sewer project. Work on the terminal is also ongoing, he said.

To secure that federal funding, Dayton City Commission on Wednesday will vote on a proposed master professional services agreement for design work and other services with Dayton-based LWC Inc. The contract is not to exceed $12 million over three years.

Most of the funding for that contract will come from the FAA or passenger facility charges, a federally regulated collection of $4.50 on airline tickets, Slaybaugh said.

The idea is to have a design contractor in place when FAA funds are awarded.

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“What this contract allows us to do is to anticipate funding from the Federal Aviation Administration going forward,” Slaybaugh said. “We need to very quickly design and bid projects … so then we’re eligible for discretionary and entitlement grants. That’s’ basically why we put it in place.”

The city will spend about $2 to $3 million of the airport’s own operating funds on construction and design as well, he said.

“We have a lot of infrastructure that constantly needs to be replaced and updated,” Slaybaugh said Tuesday. “We’re in an old facility. Some of the building that we operate in was built in 1958. Some of the newer portions of the building are late 70s and 80s.”

Another source of funding is the city’s selling of $55 million in bonds over the last two years.

Projects that need immediate attention include repaving, remilling of a crosswind runway, work that includes new lighting. Some of the funding for that $8.5 million project has been secured, Slaybaugh said.

Also, design of new airplane ramps is on tap. Essentially, airport staff is “constantly in planning mode,” Slaybaugh said.

“We have to submit bids to the FAA to get the grant application approved,” he said. “We have to kind of be ahead of the funding all of the time. That’s why we put this contract in place.”

He said the airport gets no money from city taxpayers or the city’s general fund, he said. It generates its own funding.

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