CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Work is scheduled to begin next week on a major earth-moving project near Yeager Airport that will put the facility in compliance with newer Federal Aviation Administration guidelines.
The latest construction will involve removing the top of a hill just south of the airport's main runway by over 100 feet in some areas. FAA guidelines require aircraft to ascend a certain amount of feet upon takeoff in case of engine trouble. The hill causes heavy planes to be unable to ascend to the proper height upon takeoff.
The project was discussed at the Yeager Airport board of directors' meeting yesterday.
"We're real excited about kicking this project off," Rick Holes of L. Robert Kimball, an architecture and engineering firm, told the board.
The earth-moving is Phase II of the $15 million height reduction project, $13.2 million of which is construction costs. The first phase of the project was the removal of trees on the hill, which was completed in the last month.
"There are a lot of pieces to that construction," Holes said.
The airport has received three grants for the project, including $7.5 million to help pay for Phase II, $6.9 million for Phase I and $200,000 for planning.
Because the construction project will take place near residents in the Coal Branch Heights neighborhood, airport officials plan to hold a public meeting for residents in the area at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 2. A location has not yet been finalized.