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New Othello airport hangar delayed

by CHARLES H. FEATHERSTONE
Staff Writer | February 3, 2021 1:00 AM

OTHELLO — It turned out to have been a good thing the Port of Othello was a little behind schedule on construction of its new, 10-plane hangar at the Othello Municipal Airport.

Because after reviewing the construction plans, the Federal Aviation Administration determined the hangar needed to be moved.

“About 10 feet to the south from where we had it,” said Chris Faix, executive director of the Port of Othello. “And we’re doing that now, we have a surveyor out putting new stakes in the ground.”

Faix said the FAA determined the new hangar, which will expand the airport’s capacity to 32 from the current 22 hangar spaces, was in the airport’s “object free zone,” an area which must remain clear to allow aircraft to take off, land and taxi without any potential obstructions.

Faix did not know how much moving the hangar will add to the $550,000 cost of construction, but he said it would likely not be very much, since no serious work had been done when the FAA discovered the issue.

“We did get some of the dirt work done,” he said. “But a lot of the dirt work and the laying of cement (for the foundation) had been delayed by COVID-19.”

Faix said the hope now is to have the new hangar completed in early spring and then have the striping work on the new taxi lane completed by early summer.

As it stands, Faix said the new hangar should be full once it’s finished.

“We’ve got a list. If everyone comes through, we should have it full up as soon as it’s open. We’ve got more people on the list than we have hangar space,” he said.

Faix said if that happens, the port is looking at the possibility of constructing another hangar at the airport. There is space for one more six-plane hangar, he said.

“But let’s get this one done first,” Faix said.

Charles H. Featherstone can be reached at cfeatherstone@columbiabasinherald.com.