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GB Airport picked for state funding
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The Great Bend Municipal Airport is on of 30 in Kansas selected for a share of $3.5 million is state money awarded to enhance safety and service at the facilities
The projects at public use airports were picked for funding under the 2012 Kansas Airport Improvement Program. The Great Bend Airport will receive $6,250 KAIP funding to provide airfield drainage improvements. Great Bend will provide $6,250 in matching funds to complete this project.
The Kansas Department of Transportation contribution is made possible by T-WORKS, the transportation program passed by the Kansas Legislature last May. With local funds of approximately $714,000, the total infrastructure investment will be $4.25 million.
According to Great Bend Airport Manager Martin Miller, the airport maintains a grassy safety zone around all runways to minimize damage to aircraft in case they leave the pavement. This also allows emergency vehicles to get in and out easier in the event of an accident.
Also, proper drainage is necessary to maintain a drivable surface  as soon as possible after a rain or snow.
“We plan to accomplish this project after the wheat harvest,” Miller said.
“Last year we released a study that showed Kansas airports support more than 47,000 jobs, generate $2.3 billion in payroll and produce $10.4 billion in on-airport economic activity,” said Ed Young, KDOT director of aviation. “With that kind of impact, it’s not only important to maintain our aviation infrastructure, but to ensure that our investments match the needs of our system plan.”
The projects will address maintenance, runway, facility and equipment needs at airports in Kansas.
The Kansas Department of Transportation’s Division of Aviation, which manages the program, received 114 project applications for projects totaling approximately $31.6 million. Both the applications and the total requested funding were the most ever received by KDOT.
Under guidelines of the program, project sponsors are required to pay a minimum of 10 percent of the total project costs, up to a maximum of 50 percent based on population.
Other approved projects are in Topeka, Hillsboro, Lincoln, Salina, Bird City, Colby, Lucas, Norton, Quinter, St. Francis, Smith Center, Trego County/WaKeeney, Fort Scott, Ottawa, Parsons, Pittsburg, El Dorado, Greensberg, Hutchinson, Kinsley, LaCrosse, Oxford, Wellington, Satanta, Syracuse and Tribune.