Study nears completion | SteamboatToday.com

Study nears completion

Consultants' review focuses on airport safety and expansion

Mike McCollum

Steamboat Springs — A study reviewing the Steamboat Springs Airport master plan is nearing completion, as consultants hired to conduct the study are finishing up final recommendations made Thursday night by the city's Airport Steering Committee. — A study reviewing the Steamboat Springs Airport master plan is nearing completion, as consultants hired to conduct the study are finishing up final recommendations made Thursday night by the city's Airport Steering Committee.

— A study reviewing the Steamboat Springs Airport master plan is nearing completion, as consultants hired to conduct the study are finishing up final recommendations made Thursday night by the city’s Airport Steering Committee.

“We met to answer questions and comments they have had for the draft of the plan we presented,” said Dennis Corsi, vice president of Armstrong Consultants, an airport engineering and planning firm based in Grand Junction.

“We received their review comments, and they requested some clarifications on some of the items that are in there that may not be clear from a layperson’s standpoint,” he said. “The draft report was a compilation of six separate working papers developed over the past year. This was the second time they saw each of those papers.”

Corsi said the firm is advising additional and expanded taxiways, new hangars and a longer runway at the 255-acre airport site on Routt County Road 129.

“But first of all, we advise the city to continue to operate the airport in a safe and efficient manner,” he said. “And also to (continue) maintaining all the existing pavements in a safe and operable manner, and to accomplish safety-type projects such as replacing the safety airport wildlife perimeter fence. Large game does not mix well with aircraft.”

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Armstrong Consultants have previously said that a 600-foot runway expansion would cost about $10 million, but the Federal Aviation Administration and state grants would cover 97.5 percent of that cost.

Justin Pietz, a project planner with Armstrong, said a draft of the master plan is available in City Hall on 10th Street. The consulting firm plans to post a finalized plan on its Web site next week.

“Before we submit the airport layout plan to the Steamboat Springs City Council in February, we are waiting on the FAA to review the plan’s drawing set,” he said. “They have 60 to 90 days for review on that. If the FAA changes anything, we’ll go back in and make some corrections, and if not, then we will be ready to go final.”

Corsi added that the city is not tied to whatever recommendations are made in the master plan.

“This is a road map for the airport with 20 years’ worth of safety maintenance projects in it,” he said. “It does not obligate the city to move forward with any projects, nor does it guarantee funding from city, state or federal sources. It’s up to the city to request funds to meet the needs for each year of the plan.”

The airport’s previous master plan was developed when the airport supported commercial flights. As those flights moved to the Yampa Valley Regional Airport, the Steamboat Springs Airport, also known as Bob Adams Field, turned to general aviation use.

“If and when the city approves the master plan, basically it provides a 20-year plan for the airport,” he said. “The master plan itself was prepared to reflect the current role and aircraft that use the airport in general aviation capacity.”

On the ‘Net

Review the work and findings of Steamboat Springs Airport consultants on the Web at: http://www.armstrongcons…
planning/steamboat/index.html