HARRISON, N.Y. -- The Westchester County Airport in Harrison has received more than $6.5 million in federal grant money to undergo renovations and replace equipment.
The money comes from the Federal Aviation Administration's Airport Improvement Program, which issues grants for capital improvements at airports throughout the country. The bulk of the money, about $4.73 million, will go toward tearing out and replacing the airport's runway. Also, $1.26 million will be used to replace an outdated aircraft rescue and firefighting vehicle, $315,000 to buy aircraft de-icing equipment, and $225,000 to remove a pole near the runway.
A previously approved upgrade to the airport will also end up costing more than anticipated, according to the Department of Public Works and Transportation. In June, the Board of Legislators approved repairs to Taxiway A. The FAA agreed to pay $3.26 million for the project, or approximately 90 percent, with the county contributing $362,321.
On Friday, the department announced that the cost of the construction has now risen and another $2.36 million will be needed to complete the project. The FAA has agreed to pay $2.13 million, raising its total contribution to the project to $5.39 million. The county will pay another $236,631, raising its total contribution to $598,952.
“We know investing in infrastructure and safety at the Westchester County Airport means huge growth not only in the county but in the entire Tri-State Region,” said Sen. Charles Schumer in a statement. “This FAA grant for infrastructure and safety improvements like runway upgrades, new equipment and vehicles for winter months and fire emergencies and the removal of an obstructing pole near the runway will ensure Westchester County Airport remains a beacon to residents, businesses and visitors and continues to boost the area’s economy.”
The county has also authorized the sale of $8 million in bonds to make various repairs to the airport. These projects include upgrades to the terminal's boilers, HVAC and electrical systems, improvements to the airport's water systems, and replacement of sewer lines. A $250,000 natural gas pipeline is also being installed in an effort to cut down on energy costs. The county has also begun work on updating the airport's Master Plan to find the public's thoughts on the airport and identify possible future capital needs.