Rostraver Airport closed for 2 weeks for runway repaving
Rostraver Airport is closed for about two weeks while contractor Derry Construction resurfaces the runway.
The Westmoreland County Airport Authority, meanwhile, is planning to repave a taxiway at the airport and to make control tower improvements and install a new passenger loading bridge at its larger Arnold Palmer Regional Airport, in Unity.
The nearly $800,000 Rostraver runway project began Monday and involves milling, repairing cracks and laying new pavement — similar to improvements the firm completed last fall at the Arnold Palmer airport.
None of the owners of aircraft hangared at Rostraver Airport took advantage of an offer to temporarily move their small planes to the Unity airport at no charge, authority officials said.
The authority agreed Tuesday to seek bids for resurfacing a parallel taxiway at Rostraver, a project budgeted at about $450,000, and for more than $1.3 million in improvements at the Unity airport — the new passenger loading bridge and replacement of an emergency generator. Those federally funded projects will require approval by the Federal Aviation Administration and a 5 percent local match.
The authority hopes by next fall to install the bridge, which is longer than an existing one and will allow passengers to walk up a more gradual incline to board commercial flights operated by Spirit Airlines. The airport will continue to use the current 13-year-old bridge and will convert one of two ground-service gates for the new bridge, authority Executive Director Gabe Monzo said.
The generator is at least 25 years old and “on its last legs,” according to authority engineer Scott Kunselman. He said it will cost less to operate the new 125-kilowatt natural gas-powered generator than the existing unit, which runs on diesel fuel.
The authority approved a contract with Mullen Refrigeration of Latrobe to replace heating and air-conditioning units in the Arnold Palmer control tower that date from the early 1980s and are beyond repair. The $13,412 cost will be covered through passenger facility charges at the airport rather than authority funds, Monzo said.
Work has resumed on the new Arnold Palmer access road, which will connect with the recently installed roundabout on Route 981. That project should be completed by the end of June, Kunselman said.
Jeff Himler is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-836-6622, firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter