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Tri-State Airport working to develop business sites

Oct. 18, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- Huntington Tri-State Airport needs about $500,000 more than originally projected by engineers to fund water infrastructure as part of its south side development project.

Wayne County has offered up $50,000 over the next two years, said Airport Executive Director Jerry Brienza, and he's hoping for the same from Cabell County and for additional funds from the state other organizations.

The airport authority voted at its Thursday meeting to commit $50,000 of its own, to come from the $176,000 it has in board restricted funds, to the project.

With the struggles faced by Tri-State Airport and small airports across the country right now, development of the south side of the property to attract businesses is more important than ever, he said. The airport continues efforts to attract another airline, having lost Delta in May 2012. And boardings, rental car fees and fuel sales were reported to be down in September from last year.

"I really can't express enough the importance of getting that south side project going," Brienza said. Funds for sewer development is in place and work is underway, he said.

In other business, the airport will begin paving its parking lot Nov. 4, sectioning off parts of the lot throughout the course of the project. It's expected to last about a week and wrapped up well before the holiday travel season starts, Brienza said. Asphalt Contractors and Site Work Inc. was approved to do the work, and it will be funded through the airport's parking lot reserve fund, financed through the extra dollar the airport added in recent years onto its parking fees.

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