MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Morgantown mayor Ron Dulaney officially broke ground on Phase I of the Morgantown Municipal Airport Runway 18-36 Extension project from the seat of an excavator Wednesday. The work includes a 1,001 foot runway extension and the beginning of the I-68 Commerce Park.
President and CEO of the Morgantown Area Partnership, Russ Rogerson reacted to the long-awaited historic event.
“The beginning of a wonderful development of a runway extension,” Rogerson said,” For me, more importantly the 90 acre business park.”
There are about 32 acres of developable land on airport property now, but the extension project will increase that to about 90 acres. Fill dirt will be used to develop the commerce park. Doss Enterprises is under contract to complete Phase I work for $5.7 million.
“Helping the airport, boosting economic redevelopment and working with the county commission and others,” said Morgantown mayor Ron Dulaney,” It’s a great opportunity.”
This phase of the project is about ten years in the making.
The work will be funded through the Federal Aviation Administration’s Airport Improvement Program. Required matching money will come from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.
“Air traffic coming in and out of our airport- this is in some way a front gate to our city,” Dulaney said,” So, this is great way to improve that first impression.”
Phase 1 construction will continue through the end of the year. Phase 2 construction is planned to begin in fall 2021, and Phase 3 construction is expected to begin in spring/summer 2022.
“The runway extension by its self is important,” Rogerson said,” But, creating 90 acres and be able to recruit more businesses and give existing businesses a chance locate in this area will be a good investment.”
The I-68 Commerce Park is planned for clean, light to heavy industrial or logistics activities.
“That’s a preliminary design that we now, but we’re going to get that fine tuned,” Rogerson said,” We’ll be bringing that information out in the next several months.”