Paragould’s airport is feeling growing pains, so the city has gotten grants to help it grow.

At its meeting this week, the city council approved two resolutions to permit the city to execute two grant agreements with the state Department of Aeronautics, one to build access to a taxiway to provide access to a clear span hangar, and the other to build the hangar itself.

“We are currently full on small hangars,” said Paragould Mayor Josh Agee to begin discussion of the taxiway resolution, “and we’ve had quite a few requests for a bigger hangar for private jets. So we are going that route this time.”

Thus the two resolutions. The grant for the taxiway is a 90-10 match, such that the city is to provide $8,871.77 of the $88,717.68 cost of the project, with the balance coming from the department. The lion’s share of the cost, $39,000, will be for actual construction with another $26,500 for engineering costs. The balance will cover construction administration and observation, surveying, geotechnical testing and advertising. “That’s a good deal,” said Ward 1 position 1 council member Mark Rowland, “any time you can get a grant.”

The second grant, for $320,000, is an 80-20 match, which requires the city to provide $75,000 of the $320,000. The money will fund an 80-foot-by-60-foot clear span hangar. A clear span hangar is a column-free building that allows for ingress and egress with no internal structural impediments. “This hangar has an 18-foot-by-75-foot door,” Agee said. “It will house a KingAir 200, and KingAir 300 [or any of the] five models of the Citation jets.”

Despite the project’s not yet having begun, Agee said the hangar is already leased for the next four years, for $1,100 per month, of which the first year’s rent was to be paid Oct. 12.

Agee added that after six years, hangar rent will have paid for the city’s portion of the grant. Thereafter, the rent will help fund the airport’s operations. Both resolutions passed unanimously.

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