Mott Airport looks forward to parking, road improvements

The Mott Regional Airport got a boost last week when they were awarded a state-funded grant for upcoming improvement projects.

File Photo
File Photo

By COLE BENZ | Herald Editor | cbenz@countrymedia.net

The Mott Regional Airport got a boost last week when they were awarded a state-funded grant for upcoming improvement projects.

The Mott Airport Authority has been working with Shane Steiner planning the improvements. Steiner is an Engineer with Kadrmas, Lee and Jackson of Bismarck.

Steiner said each year airports can apply grants, the recent grant funds were from the state allocated funds.

The airport can also apply for federally funded grants. Grants through the FAA’s Airport Improvement Program (AIP) are funded at 90 percent. Meaning the remaining 10 percent is split between the local airport authority or city, the rest can be funded through the state. The upcoming projects have an estimated cost of $299,107 and the most recent grant awarded to the airport is 5 percent of that amount, or $14,955.35 from the state.

The next step is for the airport to apply for funding through the AIP. The application date for federal funding has yet to be determined, according to Steiner that date can vary from year to year.

The primary focus of the future improvement project includes upgrades to the access road and paving two pieces of land into parking lots.

Right now the access road is not paved and the parking space is a grassy patch of land, both do not hold up very well through the weather of snow and rainy seasons.

Steiner said when it rains the road can get washed out, and they can be treacherous with big ruts. The same can be said about the parking lot, according to Steiner.

During busier times at the airport and official, marked parking lot will also help organize the vehicles that are parked there during flights.

Bidding for the project occurred last week and they came in over the estimated cost. So now the authority has two choices: they can rebid later this summer, or wait and rebid next spring. That decision will be up to the authority.

The area in front of the two most southern structures on the airport grounds will be the location of the parking lots.

The last time the airport in Mott saw improvements was a few years ago when the did some repairs to the structures, five years before that a new hanger was built.

According to www.AirNav.com, the Mott Regional Airport averages 44 flights a week, something Manager Rex Kelsch said could be close when taking account the seasonal usage of the airport.

“It’s very seasonal here (at the airport), because of hunting season, “ Kelsch said. “Right now it’s spray season and airplanes are going constantly.”

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