Public hearing tonight regarding airport plans

TUPELO – The public gets a chance today to learn more about Tupelo Airport Authority’s plans to expand its runway and shift a major east-west thoroughfare.
Airport officials have received approval from the Federal Aviation Administration to extend TRA’s runway from 6,500 feet to 7,500 feet, and are seeking an additional 500 feet.
But the biggest issue is what the airport authority says is a need to shift West Jackson Street Extended from its current route that runs perpendicular to the runway and dumps into Coley Road.
Airport officials say that the road is in a “Runway Protection Zone” and needs to move, regardless of a runway extension.
TRA Executive Director Terry Anderson will have a presentation showing the proposed new route for West Jackson Street Extended at today’s public meeting, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at City Hall.
City officials have indicated they prefer a tunnel for the road, and Anderson said that it remains an option, pending federal dollars and approval.
Also on Wednesday, Anderson provided revised figures on the cost of the various projects.
The runway construction is now expected to cost about $9.3 million, compared to $7 million mentioned earlier, and the proposed relocation of Colonial Estate Road would cost about $2.5 million, not $2 million.
A tunnel, previously tagged at $7 million, would cost an estimated $8.2 million.
While the meeting is open to the public, only written comments can be submitted.

NEMS Daily Journal

Click video to hear audio