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Brookhaven calls for hangar bids

The City of Brookhaven is putting out the call for bidders for a $600,000 bond to be used for a strip hangar at the Brookhaven-Lincoln County Airport.

Aldermen voted 5-0 Feb. 12 to borrow more than half a million dollars on a five-year general obligation note to pay for the hangar, which is the first priority on the list of short-term goals for the airport. Ward 2 Alderman Shannon Moore and Ward 3 Alderwoman Mary Wilson were absent from that special-called meeting.

Brookhaven will receive sealed bids at City Hall in the Lincoln County-Brookhaven Government Complex at 301 South First St. through 4 p.m. April 2. Bids will be publicly opened and read by the Board of Aldermen at their regular meeting at 6:30 p.m. that same day.

The note will mature annually on May 1. Interest will be calculated on a 30/360 basis, paid annually each May 1.

At the Feb. 12 meeting, engineer Ryan Holmes with Dungan Engineering laid out the $12 million capital improvement plan at the airport that will cover additions and renovations over the next two decades.

The 20-year plan is designed to take what’s there and either relocate it or replace it to allow for optimum use of the property and facilities. Holmes said the current layout doesn’t allow for good traffic flow for planes.

Part of the plan calls for the relocation of the fuel farm’s two 10,000-gallon fuel tanks, which are directly in the way of car traffic, he said. Traffic must cross the area where planes travel to get to the terminal building to park, which is not ideal, Holmes said. Planes have been “bumped” by auto traffic before, he said.

The plan calls for a new strip hangar to be built to replace the older hangars made of block and sheet metal. With the old hangars gone, the fuel farm can be moved.

In the future, the city plans to upgrade the 1,800-square-foot terminal building, which includes the airport manager’s office, a waiting area, conference room, flight planning area and restrooms. The facility is adequate, but its location is not ideal because motorists must drive through the airport to get there, and Holmes said that has caused “fender-benders” with parked aircraft.

Aldermen discussed several funding sources for future plans and will seek to use funds available through the Airport Improvement Program, competitive multimodel grants and federal and state discretionary funds.

The city is entitled to $150,000 annually in AIP funds, which can be banked up to four years. There is two years’ worth available now, Holmes said. The multimodel grant is usually limited to about $300,000 and is competitive.

To qualify for the Federal Aviation Administration grants the city must show short-, medium- and long-range goals for the airport.