Airport building project in progress

Town of Harrietstown Councilman Ron Keough, right, and Adirondack Regional Airport Manager Corey Hurwitch talk Thursday as they look over the expansion of the airport’s snow removal equipment/aircraft rescue and firefighting facility. (Enterprise photo — Chris Knight)

LAKE CLEAR — Construction is in full swing on the last of three major building projects at the Adirondack Regional Airport.

A crew from Con Tech Building Systems of Gouverneur started work in May on a $1.7 million expansion of the airport’s facility for snow removal equipment, aircraft rescue and firefighting, located a short walk from the airport terminal building.

“Basically we’re adding four new, large garage bays so we can fit every piece of our equipment in, mainly for snow removal, because when it’s negative 30 degrees, our equipment doesn’t like starting after it’s been sitting outside,” he said.

“We’re also getting new office space. The area where our corporate customers come and go will be spruced up a little bit. Instead of block walls, we’ll have nice painted walls, make it a little more professional, and have a nicer seating area for the pilots coming and going.”

The Federal Aviation Administration awarded the project $1.5 million in July of last year, with the state and the town picking up the rest of the cost. The federal money comes from the Airport and Airway Trust fund, which draws its money from user fees, fuel taxes and other, similar revenue sources.

A crew from Con Tech Building Systems of Gouverneur started work in May on a $1.7 million expansion of the Adirondack Regional Airport’s facility for snow removal equipment, aircraft rescue and firefighting. (Enterprise photo — Chris Knight)

Hurwitch said the construction is expected to wrap up in mid October. When the new facility is complete, he said the current general aviation space in the existing building will become an employee break room and storage space for firefighting chemicals. The truck bays in the current building will be used for small equipment and mechanic space.

This is the last of three big projects at the airport over the last three years. The other two were an expansion of the airport’s terminal, completed in January 2015 using $1 million in federal funding, and construction of a new, 6,400-square-foot hangar, which opened last year and was largely funded by a $700,000 state grant.

The airport is owned and operated by the town of Harrietstown. At a meeting Thursday night, the board authorized Supervisor Mike Kilroy to sign paperwork for two federal grants the airport was recently awarded: $85,500 to replace firefighting gear and $57,000 for design work to upgrade airfield lighting.