After years of planning, Flagler County commissioners — both past and present — stuck their shovels into the grass and dirt Monday and broke ground on the expansion at Flagler County Executive Airport.
- New 5,500-foot runway coming to Flagler County Executive Airport
- County officials hope the new runways attracts larger planes, more traffic
- $12.2 million project will be done in about 350 days
A new, longer runway will be built over the next 350 days. County officials hope it catapults the area's economy by attracting larger planes and more airport traffic.
The 5,500-foot runway will cost about $12.2 million, and Airport Director Roy Sieger said "not too many airports building a brand new runway."
Sieger has been working on the project since 2011.
"We want to see the larger aircraft in here," Sieger said. "They take a lot more fuel than the smaller ones. We love the small ones, but would like to get some larger ones in here, as well."
The airport is primarily used for general aviation, including flight training, corporate businesses and tourists flying in and out on private jets.
Sieger said plane operations run between 250 to 500 times per day.
Amanda Bailey, who lives in Flagler County, said the expansion should help the area's economy with jobs and business at the airport.
"Any time you can bring more and more people into our county, that's a good thing," she said.
The project will employ about two dozen workers daily while they work on the new runway, a new taxi way and other work at the airport, including paving and stormwater.
"The economic impact once you start bringing those different kinds of jets in here — corporate traffic flow gives those businesses and corporations an airport to come into," Sieger said. "So, not only airport expanding, but the county expanding, as well."