Congressman Matt Gaetz announced today airports in Okaloosa and Escambia Counties will receive federal grant money from the United States Department of Transportation totaling $2,618,796.00. The grant money will be used for airport improvements, including taxiway and apron improvements in Okaloosa County ($2,575,000), and demolition work for a commerce park in Pensacola ($43,796).
The Eglin AFB/Destin–Fort Walton Beach Airport (VPS) will receive $2,107,000.00 to rehabilitate a combined 2,000 feet of taxiway to maintain the structural integrity of the pavement.
The Bob Sikes Airport (CEW) will receive $270,000.00 to fund the design for the rehabilitation of 38,000 square yards of existing apron to maintain the structural integrity of the pavement.
The Destin Executive Airport (DTS) will receive $198,000.00 to prepare for the rehabilitation of 65,000 square yards of existing apron, to maintain the structural integrity of the pavement.
The Pensacola International Airport (PNS) will receive $43,796.00 to fund the removal of structural obstructions on land acquired for further airport development.
“It is critical to invest in our airports. Maintaining and upgrading airport infrastructure, while giving them room to grow and expand, will help our airports better meet the needs of travelers,” said Congressman Matt Gaetz. “Northwest Florida has always been a popular destination for tourism, business, and governmental travel. The $2.6 million in grants from the Department of Transportation will allow Northwest Florida’s popularity as a travel destination to continue to grow, now and in the years to come,” said Congressman Matt Gaetz.
“This is exciting news, as we expect to serve over a million passengers this year. We’ve seen unprecedented growth at the Destin–Fort Walton Beach Airport. The work that the Congressman has done will allow us to enhance amenities that are much-needed at each of the airports,” said Carolyn Ketchel, Chairman of the Okaloosa Board of County Commissioners and Airport Liaison.
“The ability for the Pensacola International Airport to continue moving forward with the acquisition and preparation of property for future development is of paramount importance in the City of Pensacola’s ongoing efforts to protect the Airport from incompatible adjacent land use, and for future economic diversification opportunities at the facility,” said Dan Flynn, Director of Pensacola International Airport.
The grant money is expected to be disbursed before September.