Albert Whitted Airport broke ground on a new control tower in May. The
new tower replaces one built in the 1950s that originally served as a
naval observation tower.
The condition of the
original tower is such that it is well beyond its usable life, says
Richard Lesniak, Albert Whitted'
A $2 million FAA grant as well as "stimulus"
funding through the American Recovery and Reconstruction Act made the
Lesniak says the Tampa
Bay region's diversity gave it the boost needed to compete for funding.
"Because the Tampa Bay Area has such a wide variety of businesses and
industries, it increases the amount of opportunities to apply for these
types of grants," he says. "And the fact that this project was a
shovel-ready project that was already two-thirds funded made it the
perfect candidate for the stimulus funds."
new tower, situated 250 feet from the original, is being built to
sustain winds up to 130 mph. The planned tower is almost 10 feet taller
than its predecessor, and will contain offices, an employee lounge and a
generator. Construction is slated to be completed by Spring 2011.
Owned by the city of St. Petersburg
, Albert Whited handles
approximately 80,000 general aviation aircraft operations each year and
is the home base to an estimated 185 aircraft. Over the last decade the
Department of Transportation
and the city have invested nearly $7
million into the airport facility. Completed projects include The Hanger
restaurant and lounge, an intermodal general aviation center and
terminal, refurbished hangers and a new helicopter parking ramp. An
additional taxiway and aircraft parking are also planned.
Source: Richard Lesniak, Albert Whitted