Monday, February 19, 2001
Steamboat Springs Although it saw about 1,200 fewer takeoffs and landings in 2000 than it did in 1999, the Steamboat Springs Airport is poised to make up some of the $2.8 million debt it incurred after building a 16,000-square-foot passenger terminal in '93.
Tonight, Airport Manager Matt Grow will present City Council with year-end figures for the airport and ask the body to approve a plan for a commercial operator to build more airplane hangars at the airport.
The airport took in about $1.64 million in revenues in 2000, according to projected budget figures, though that revenue includes grants the city received to complete a runway overlay.
The airport is a general aviation facility and does not provide scheduled commercial service a factor that may keep it from showing profits.
"Unless an airport has commercial service, there's no real way to make money," Deputy City Manager Wendy DuBord said in September.
And based on the latest draft of its airport policy statement, the city does not anticipate any commercial operators signing on anytime soon. The city, after building the passenger terminal to accommodate commercial service in 1993, lost that service in 1995.
With that in mind, the city is hoping to find another way to coax some cash out of the airport. It sent out a series of requests for proposals over the past six months attempting to find a business operation or company interested in building hangars at the airport.
Grow is hoping the city can contract with Mountain Flight Services for the company to build a 10,000-square-foot private hangar with an office and maintenance unit directly south of the existing terminal. The city would make money from the hangar through ground leasing, fuel sales and overnight hangar fees.
Grow also hopes the city will enter into an agreement with Dunn Properties to build more hangars on 30 acres of land by the airport. Those hangars could bring in up to $561,720 a year to the city from ground leasing and fuel sales, Grow said. The city operates a fixed-base operation at the airport, which sells aviation fuel to plane owners and businesses, among other things.
Grow has also expressed concern at the number of planes currently being parked outside, oftentimes collecting ice and snow. The airport currently has a wait list for hangar space 38 people long.