Ground was broken recently on nearly $10.5 million worth of capital improvements coming to Springfield’s Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport. Local officials gathered together to commemorate the start of construction on general and business aviation facilities and roadway and parking lot improvements for the main passenger terminal complex.
Springfield Airport Authority Board Chair, Frank J. Vala, stated, “Today, we continue our efforts to rebuild and modernize major airport facilities to better serve our local aircraft owners and operators, commercial airline passengers and visitors to Springfield. These improvements will provide a first-class front door to our community for those visitors utilizing the general aviation terminal. We are confident these improvements will provide a memorable first impression for those visiting our community.” He continued, “Commercial air travelers will find it safer and easier to navigate around the main terminal complex with these road improvements and expanded parking lots. This work will set the stage for future investment in the airport that will help create jobs and provide an environment to potentially support other community-wide economic development opportunities.”
Building improvements include a complete rehabilitation of the fixed base operator (FBO) facility’s main hangars and the relocation of the general aviation terminal building. The hangars will receive new roofing, sidewalls, ceilings, modern lighting and heating systems and high performance floor finishes. The terminal area will be moved to the area between the two main hangars and will be complete with a modern pilot’s lounge, flight planning room, conference facilities, café/canteen break area, passenger waiting lounge, customer service counter, line operations office, maintenance and catering support facilities. Additionally, exterior structural, roofing, insulation, painting and lighting improvements are being made to other corporate hangars and at Lincoln Land Community College’s LRS Aviation Center. Total building project investment is $7,934,384.10, which is financed with general obligation bonds and commercial debt serviced with future lease payments. Halverson Construction of Springfield is the general contractor for these building projects; completion is expected in Fall 2019.
Roadway and parking lot improvements include combining Parking Lots A and B to create approximately 225 new parking spaces, while creating a dedicated two-lane, one-way drive through the main terminal complex providing a more safe, efficient and convenient means to navigate about the complex. A new dedicated entrance will be constructed to serve the newly renovated FBO complex for general/business aviation users. The roadwork will be complete with updated lighting, signage, markings and elevated pedestrian crosswalks. Additionally, the parking lot at LLCC’s LRS Aviation Center will be resurfaced. Total investment in roadway and parking lot improvements is $2,563,934.78, which is financed by a $1 million Illinois Department of Transportation grant and airport passenger facility charge (PFC) revenues. Truman L. Flatt & Sons of Springfield is the general contractor for these pavement projects; completion is expected to be late Fall 2018.
Jonathan Miller, President of Stellar Aviation Group, stated, “As the primary aviation services provider at Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport, Stellar Aviation is very excited about these new improvements being completed by the Springfield Airport Authority. This project will result in a ‘Class A’ terminal building along with upgraded hangar space to accommodate our operations. Our intent is to match these first class improvements with FBO services of the same caliber to support the government and business community, leisure travelers and other visitors in this gateway to the capital of the great State of Illinois. We are proud to be part of this project, and look forward to serving the Springfield community for many years to come.”
Mayor Jim Langfelder stated, “The Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport is a key component in our local economy and also aids in the economic development of the surrounding area. The airport serves a variety of industries every day and these renovations are key in keeping us competitive. Our partnership with the airport is important and we look forward to these enhancements.”
Sangamon County Chairman Andy VanMeter, stated “The Airport Board of Commissioners has taken calculated risks to build the airport, to build traffic at the airport, and the effort today to build this new FBO facility is another example of them reaching out and taking another risk.” VanMeter continued, “It could have been easy to let it (aged facilities) slide for another ten years. What I like best about this FBO facility is that it says to business leaders around the country, this community is open for business!”