By Ashley Graves
The Cullman Times
Construction has been abundant at Cullman Regional Airport's Folsom Field since the end of last year.
But, within the next month, officials anticipate their latest round of projects — which include several new hangars, and a new apron — to be complete and ready to open for use.
"Right now, the two T-hangars are complete, and we've been putting planes in," airport director Bob Burns said. "It's been nice to see them going in. While construction was going on, we had more money going out than we did coming in, so now we've got the best of both worlds."
Meanwhile, Burns added the new corporate hangar,an 80x100 square foot building, will house the Skydive of Alabama aircraft and should be complete within six weeks. In addition to the new space, improvements are also being done to the airport's apron, or the area where aircraft are parked, unloaded or loaded, refueled, or boarded. As part of the project, the asphalt is being taken up and replaced with concrete.
“We’re in the process of digging up the last of the bad spots,” Burns said. “Then we’ll start laying the concrete. We’re anticipating completion to be finished in about six weeks as well.”
Once done, Burns said the apron will allow the airport to be able to take in larger and heavier aircraft, which could play a role in attracting new industry to the area.
“The more traffic of that type we have, the more fuel we sell, and the more hangars we sell, and that’s what pays the expenses,” he said. “It also makes a good impression to industries. A lot of what we have already, we do everything we can to accommodate them, but of course this could help in attracting new industry as well.”
Upstairs, The Prop Diner, the airport’s restaurant, recently opened under new management. Burns said it’s open from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.
The next phase of construction the airport hopes to tackle is a 700-foot extension of the runway. The Cullman County Commission approved the application for a grant to purchase Joe Walker property by the Airport Board at its meeting in November. The extension would put the runway at 6,200 feet.
“The north end has already gotten approval from the FAA,” Burns said. “Now we just have to find money for it.”
Ashley Graves can be reached by phone at 734-2131, ext. 225, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org