Airport project delayed

Nov. 7--A major construction project at Sand Springs Pogue Airport has been delayed indefinitely, mainly because of the rising costs of steel and concrete.

City Manager Doug Enevoldsen said the project, which originally was budgeted in 2006, went through several estimates before it was determined to be too costly for the city.

The project initially included 12 hangars that would be built at a cost of $300,000, Enevoldsen said.

It was expanded to include six more hangars at a cost of $650,000, but this figure was later estimated at closer to $850,000.

"As a result of that, the project had to be put on hold because of the significant increase in cost," Enevoldsen said.

The budget of the city's municipal authority, which administers the airport's functions, shrank somewhat last year after a rainy spring and a cool summer, he said.

With fewer utility customers using as much water and electricity as they typically do, less money was available for large projects, he said.

"We rely on that revenue," Enevoldsen said.

The airport, 3200 N. Airport Road, has another project in the works as well.

T.J. Davis, the city's economic development director,

said the city is installing infrastructure that will support a hangar to be leased by Platinum Air.

"We're putting in water, sewer and fire suppression lines," Davis said.

Ken Madison, airport supervisor, said the $2 million project will be completed in about two to three months.

The structure, called a fixed-base operator, will provide storage, maintenance and refueling for aircraft.

Madison added that state and federal grants, along with a small amount of matching funds from the city, will pay for the renovation and reinstallation of airport lighting on the east taxiway.

"The existing lighting is 20-plus years old," Madison said, adding that several outages have occurred, causing a serious safety hazard.

Enevoldsen said the airport remains an asset to the city, adding that the site's proximity to Tulsa's downtown area is a benefit to air travelers.

"We are the closest general aviation airport to downtown Tulsa," he said.

"That's a huge advantage for us compared to other airports in the area."

Sand Springs Pogue Airport is about 15 minutes away from downtown Tulsa, he said.

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