Pennsylvania Invests $10 Million in Airport Projects to Boost Economy and Infrastructure

Plane landing on airstripPhoto by Tim Gouw on

HARRISBURG, PA — The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has announced a nearly $10 million state investment in facility improvements, infrastructure preservation, and development at 10 public-use airports. This initiative is part of the Shapiro administration’s commitment to maintaining safe, reliable infrastructure and fostering economic growth.

Pennsylvania’s aviation industry is a significant economic driver. It employs over 226,000 people, delivers nearly $12.5 billion in payroll and employment benefits, and generates a $34 billion annual economic impact. Beyond providing travel options, these airports facilitate essential services such as air cargo, police and law enforcement, emergency medical services, firefighting, and disaster response.

“Pennsylvania’s aviation industry provides good-paying jobs while linking communities to a larger transportation system that moves goods and people around the world,” said PennDOT Secretary Mike Carroll. “These investments are another example of Governor Shapiro’s focus on maintaining our infrastructure while also expanding regional business opportunities.”

The funds will support various projects across the state:

  • Allegheny County: Allegheny County Airport receives $750,000 to repair and upgrade existing hangars.
  • Bedford County: Bedford County Airport gets $100,000 to repair an existing hangar floor.
  • Berks County: Reading Regional/Carl A. Spaatz Field Airport is allocated $1.5 million to construct a hangar and office building for the fixed base operator.
  • Bucks County: Quakertown Airport receives $225,000 to repave and reseal aprons and taxilanes, while Doylestown Airport gets an equal amount for similar work around T-hangars.
  • Cambria County: John Murtha Johnstown-Cambria County Airport is awarded $1.1 million for site preparation for a new hangar.
  • Lancaster County: Lancaster Airport gets $2 million to design and prepare the site for a new corporate hangar.
  • Northampton County: Braden Airpark receives $975,000 to replace approach runway lighting and edge lighting.
  • Schuylkill County: Schuylkill County/Joe Zerby Airport is allocated $700,000 to repair and upgrade the terminal building and add an office for a flight school.
  • Westmoreland County: Arnold Palmer Regional Airport is granted $2.4 million to expand the terminal and upgrade the TSA screening area.
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These projects are funded through the state Capital Budget via the Aviation Transportation Assistance Program, supported by bonds.

Investing in Pennsylvania’s Airports: Fueling Connectivity, Safety, and Economic Growth

This investment is crucial for several reasons. Airports serve as vital hubs that connect local communities to national and international markets. By improving airport infrastructure, Pennsylvania can enhance its connectivity, making it easier for businesses to operate and expand. This, in turn, can attract more investments and create job opportunities.

Moreover, well-maintained airports are essential for public safety. They support emergency medical services, law enforcement, and disaster response, ensuring communities receive timely assistance during crises. Upgrading facilities and equipment helps maintain high safety standards.

The economic implications are far-reaching. Enhanced airport facilities can boost tourism by providing better services to travelers. This can lead to increased spending in local economies, benefitting hotels, restaurants, and other businesses.

In summary, the nearly $10 million investment in Pennsylvania’s airports reflects a strategic effort to bolster infrastructure and stimulate economic growth. By focusing on both immediate improvements and long-term development, the state aims to ensure its aviation sector continues to thrive and contribute significantly to the Commonwealth’s prosperity.

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