Hoeven Working to Secure Support For Minot Airport Expansion Project

Senator Hosts Senior FAA Officials in Minot to Make the Case

MINOT, N.D. – With the city of Minot’s growth and increased air traffic, Senator John Hoeven is working to secure federal support for the city’s major airport expansion project. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recently awarded the airport an $8.7 million grant funded by Congress to construct a new taxiway, complete construction on a second taxiway and fund the design of a new passenger terminal building for the increasingly busy airport.

A new terminal is estimated to cost $38 million to $40 million, and the master plan for the entire expansion project is expected to cost about $85 million, including the new passenger terminal, taxiways, apron, parking area and other upgrades to existing infrastructure. Following a meeting with city and airport officials, Hoeven, FAA Airports Division Manager Susan Schalk and FAA Acting Airports Manager for North Dakota Andy Peek toured the existing passenger terminal, airport grounds and tower where they got a 360 degree overview of the planned expansion project.

Of the total estimated $85 million cost, the airport is eligible for an estimated $47.5 million in additional FAA Airport Improvement Program grants. The city and state will also provide matching funding. Hoeven said he brought Schalk to Minot to make the case for the expansion.

Minot International Airport boardings through August 2012 were up by 57 percent over last year, putting heavy pressure on facilities. An expanded air facility is essential to meet the demands of the region’s growing economy and population. Airport officials plan to bid the terminal project by March and break ground by May of next year. They plan to complete the project by the end of 2014.

“Minot’s economy is up, its population is up, and airport boardings are up, as well,” Hoeven said. “The city needs an airport facility that can meet the needs of a growing community and a growing economy”

Joining the senator and Schalk for the news conference were Minot Mayor Curt Zimbelman, Airport Director Andy Solsvig, State Aeronautics Commissioner Larry Taborsky, City Manager David Waind, City Council President Jim Hatlelid and City Finance Director Cindy Hemphill. Solsvig provided schematics and a three dimensional model of the expansion project.