Albany International Airport will be repaving its main runway this summer, using more than $4 million in federal funding.
The Albany County Airport Authority on Monday awarded a construction contract to Rifenburg Construction of Brunswick, which is expected to start work shortly.
The $4.7 million upgrade to Runway 1-19 will be getting funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation over two fiscal years, U.S. Sens. Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand and U.S. Rep. Paul Tonko announced Tuesday. Federal money is covering 90 percent of the project cost, with the state and airport authority splitting the remainder.
The project will involve repaving, marking, lighting and other improvements to the runway, the pavement of which is nearing the end of its useful life. The 8,500-foot runway runs north and south, bringing air traffic over Wolf Road and the town of Clifton Park.
Airport spokesman Doug Myers said most of the milling and paving will be done at night and should have no impact on operation of the runway during the day.
The airport, the Capital Region’s only commercial airport, handled 44,456 landings and takeoffs in 2013, of which about 70 percent were on the main runway, Myers said.
The elected officials said obtaining the funding is important because the airport is a regional economic resource.
“Keeping Albany International Airport in top-notch shape is critical to attracting business and tourism to the region,” Schumer said.
“Our local airports like Albany International are tremendous drivers of the economy, and by giving these facilities the resources they need to enhance their operations, we can help to bring more business to the area,” Tonko said.
The airport authority board on Monday also approved a $1.05 million project to purchase new glycol recovery and snow removal equipment. Federal money is also paying 90 percent of that cost.
Albany International Airport serves more than one million passengers each year.
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