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Authority exploring options for renovation airport parking lot

Jamestown Regional Airport Authority members discussed exploring options to begin construction on the airport's parking lot this year at its meeting Wednesday.

Jamestown Regional Airport Authority members discussed exploring options to begin construction on the airport's parking lot this year at its meeting Wednesday.

Authority member Brent Harris said the parking lot at the Jamestown Regional Airport is overflowing, so something needs to be done this year.

Keith Veil, authority vice chairman, suggested moving the F-86 airplane displayed in the parking lot to create more space and create a better traffic area. Veil said moving the airplane down to the entrance of the airport could be an option.

Sam Seafeldt, airport director, said it would be the airport's cost to do anything related to the plane, but the airport could receive funding for renovations of the parking lot. If the lot is funded federally, the airport would have to wait 20 years to charge for parking, he said.

Authority members will look into funding and other options for work on the parking lot to report at the next meeting.

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The authority also reviewed and approved its list of strategic projects for 2017-2021.

One project would be to explore getting an Aircraft Communications, Addressing and Reporting System. The system would help reduce delays from pilots making weight and balance calculations before taking off, said Jim Boyd, authority chairman. Airlines typically pay for the system costs, so the authority is going to talk to SkyWest Airlines about getting the system, Harris said.

The authority has added getting a full-service car rental at the airport to its strategic plan, Harris said. It would be a better service for passengers so they could drop off cars to and from other cities, he said.

Avis Car Rental is located at the airport but uses cars from R.M. Stoudt, so they can't be dropped off at another Avis location and cars from other locations can't be dropped off in Jamestown, Harris said.

Another project is looking into getting an instrument landing system for runway 13, which would allow a precision approach so planes could land during lower visibility, Seafeldt said. Installing the system would be a big project and would possibly require the authority to buy out homeowners, he said.

The authority also reviewed the passenger boarding report. Jamestown Regional Airport had 1,199 paid passenger boardings in February, breaking the high record of 1,164 boardings set last July. The airport also saw a 34 percent increase in paid passenger boardings from last February, according to a report from the North Dakota Aeronautics Commission.

Harris said there are still about 1,000 seats open per month, so there is room to grow.

In other business, the authority:

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• approved to start bids on April 12 for a west taxilane resurfacing project and a project to repair cracked ceilings and remark runways.

• approved an engineering agreement with Interstate Engineering for the west taxilane project.

• got approval from the Federal Aviation Administration to go forward with a 10-year wildlife hazard assessment earlier than expected.

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