LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Delaware Airpark grant continues valued mission

Earlier this month, members of Delaware’s congressional delegation announced that the Delaware Airpark in Cheswold would be receiving a $5.8 million grant to update and expand the facility. [“Delaware Airpark gets $5.8M grant,” article, Sept. 3]

In addition to [U.S.] Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons, Delaware State University President Dr. Harry Williams, Delaware River and Bay Authority Airports director Stephen Williams and alumni of DSU’s aviation program who are now working in the aviation industry were all among those on hand for the Sept. 2 announcement.

Jeffrey Spiegelman

Rep. Jeffrey N. Spiegelman

Mr. Williams stated that the “funding will be used to construct a new east-west runway and parallel taxiway system consistent with the airport’s master plan that is necessary for continued aviation success and business development growth at the facility.”

Officials state that the project will also include offsite wetland mitigation. The new runway and taxiway system are expected to be operational in 2017.

According to Mr. Williams, this project is more than 10 years in the making and one that “illustrates Delaware’s ongoing commitment to the aviation business sector.”

The Delaware Airpark is home to 45 based aircraft and Delaware State University’s flight training program and serves both corporate and recreational flyers year-round. According to the DRBA, the airport is especially busy during the summer months when Delaware State conducts NASA and Air Force ROTC pilot training.

I had the opportunity of touring this fine facility in the recent past, and during the visit, we were told of the success of DSU’s training program.

During this latest announcement, university president Dr. Williams reiterated those impressive results. He stated, “As the university continues to produce professional pilots whose proficiencies have resulted in a 100-percent hiring rate, DSU, the Delaware River and Bay Authority, the Delaware congressional delegation and the federal government can all share in the credit for helping in its success.”

I commend our congressional delegation and the Federal Aviation Administration for the funding commitment they continue to make in keeping the Delaware Airpark a viable economic entity in our state.

State Rep. Jeffrey N. Spiegelman
R-District 11 (Hartly, Kenton, Townsend and surrounding areas)

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