August 1, 2018

Worcester airport receives $3.2M for runway improvements

Photo/Grant Welker
Worceser Regional Airport has received $3.2 million to repair one of its two runways, coming after a much larger $32-million safety project at the airport.

Worcester Regional Airport has received a $3.2-million federal grant to pay for improvements to the shorter of its two runways.

The funding, announced Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Transportation, will allow for a rehabilitation to Runway 15-33, a 5,000-foot-long runway closest to the airport terminal secondary to the airport's longer Runway 11-29.

Worcester Regional Airport received a small share of more than $3 billion in airport improvement funding issued by the Federal Aviation Administration this year, which include runways, taxiways and terminal repairs.

The FAA also granted $1 million to the airport in June to help expand the airport's services. That grant will be used to rehabilitate about an acre and a half of apron pavement near the terminal.

Fitchburg Municipal Airport also received funding on Tuesday. The airport, which doesn't have commercial flights, received $372,000 to repair its runway.

The upcoming repairs in Worcester will follow a much larger project at the airport, a $32-million investment from the airport's owner, the Massachusetts Port Authority. That project included adding new lighting to both runways, a so-called jughandle that allows planes to turn around, and a new antenna allowing planes to land in lower visibility.

The airport has long been plagued by delays and cancellations because of fog or other conditions, but the improvements that were completed last year, known as a CAT III system, are expected to increase reliability at Worcester Regional Airport.

JetBlue began flying to New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport in May, and American Airlines has said it will fly twice a day from Worcester Regional Airport to Philadelphia beginning in October.

Read more

U.S. DOT grants Worcester airport $463K


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