MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The City of Morgantown will receive $7,777,778 for the runway extension project at MGW through the Federal Aviation Administration’s Airport Improvement Program, which received additional funds from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.
U.S. Senators Shelley Moore Capito and Joe Manchin, members of the Senate Appropriations Committee made the announcement Wednesday.
“News of this funding is great to hear, especially in a time when our local airports need our support,” Senator Capito said. “This funding will enable the acquisition of property, design, and beginning of construction activities to extend the runway length for this important transportation hub. This is a critical initial investment in a project that can bring long-term economic benefit to Monongalia county and the surrounding areas. I’m thankful for the commitment the FAA has fostered in our state and the additional support we are receiving from the CARES Act. The combination of the funds through the AIP program supplemented by the CARES Act will enable this phase of the project to move forward without the usual local funding match, making this even better news for Morgantown and West Virginia.”
“Our airports are vital to West Virginia’s economy and tourism industry, allowing tourists to visit our wild and wonderful state and West Virginians to travel across America. The COVID-19 pandemic has hit our airports hard. As a member of the Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, I have been a champion for additional funding through the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for our small, rural, non-hub airports. Since Congress began funding this program in 2018, West Virginia airports have received millions of dollars for airport improvements, and I am pleased the FAA is providing funding to the Morgantown Municipal-Walter Bill Hart Airport to accommodate increased air traffic serving the Morgantown community and West Virginia University (WVU). I will continue to fight to ensure that all of our airports receive this funding,” said Senator Manchin.
The extension project will add 1,000 feet to one of the shortest runways in the state.
According to the city, the money can be used for:
• All clearing and grubbing for site prep;
• Erosion and sedimentation controls;
• Temporary stormwater management features;
• Embankment toe bench;
• Culverts for the stream enclosures;
• The start of the embankment; and
• Design and construction management for the first construction package.
Work is expected to begin in the fall of 2020.
The runway extension will also be part of the proposed I-68 Industrial Park. According to information from the city, the park will have frontage off Exit 7 on I-68 and will be one of the largest industrial parks in north central West Virginia.