10/29/04 — Mt. Olive Airport runway extension takes off

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Mt. Olive Airport runway extension takes off

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on October 29, 2004 2:04 PM

MOUNT OLIVE -- Work has begun on extending the runway at Mount Olive's airport, and the town board will be asked to award a contract to continue the expansion.

The extension project is required by the state and will allow the airport to handle larger jets. When the three-phase project is completed the runway will be extended from 3,750 feet to 5,000 feet.

The Mount Olive Airport Committee decided this week to ask town commissioners to approve the second phase of the runway expansion, off the northeast end, pending the arrival of a $166,000 state grant.

The town can't afford to build it all at one time and plans to extend the runway in three phases using state grants.

Work began Monday on the south end of the runway, and that is expected to be finished by the end of next week. The south end will be 200 feet longer.

The expansion of the south end of the runway will take close to $152,000 in grants, and the northeast end will take a little over $200,000. The northeast end will gain 400 feet.

The third phase would extend the runway 650 feet.

The matter will come before the Mount Olive town board Monday night at 7 in Town Hall.

Airport Committee Chairman Bob Quinn said the committee wants to get the second contract awarded while the contractor is still at the site. That way, the equipment won't have to be moved back to the airport when it's time to start working on the other end.

It could save on the cost of mobilization, said George Futrelle, committee member. Prices can increase, he said, and wet weather could come and slow down the work.

"If we move along, y'all can have asphalt down by Thanksgiving," he said. "It's a great project. Looks like everything is running smooth so far."