A Wednesday afternoon meeting will focus on the proposed Oak Ridge Airport, and a project update will be given. The meeting will start at 4 p.m. Wednesday at McGhee Tyson Airport in Alcoa. It’s open to the public.
It’s a meeting of the Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority General Aviation Committee. The Committee will meet at 510 Center-Airfield Maintenance Operations Center Training Room at 2055 Airfield Service Drive at the airport in Alcoa.
Agenda items include:
- An overall update on the Oak Ridge General Aviation Airport Project by Billy Stair.
- Proposed Oak Ridge Airport Layout Plan (ALP) by Mike Reiter with Michael Baker International Inc.
- Proposed Program Management Work Authorization for the Oak Ridge Airport by Bill Barley with CHA Consulting Inc.
- Environmental Assessment Planning and Scoping Work Authorization with Gresham Smith and Partners for the Oak Ridge Airport Environmental Assessment by Bryan White
See the Wednesday afternoon meeting agenda here.
One year ago, in March 2016, Oak Ridge Today reported that an environmental assessment had been completed for the transfer of 170 acres for the general aviation airport, which would be built on the south side of the Heritage Center in west Oak Ridge, along State Route 58. The assessment found no significant impact.
The assessment was completed by the U.S. Department of Energy Oak Ridge Office of Environmental Management. The land would be transferred to the Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority.
In August 2015, officials said conditions are subject to change, but plans then called for starting construction on the airport at Heritage Center, the former K-25 site, in 2018. An estimate at that time said the airport could cost between $30 million and $40 million. (It’s not clear if that timeline and cost estimate are still in effect, but we hope to have more information after the Wednesday afternoon meeting.)
The airport would have a 5,000-foot runway that would accommodate general aviation aircraft including corporate jets, private airplanes, and emergency medical services aircraft.
Work on an airport master plan was reported to just be starting in August 2015, and it was expected to take 12 months to complete. The master plan was expected to provide more details on subjects like cost and schedule.
The Oak Ridge airport would the third for the MKAA, which would own the site. The other two are McGhee Tyson in Blount County and Downtown Island in Knoxville.
In August 2015, Bill Marrison, president of the Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority, said the Oak Ridge airport would be a reliever airport and help relieve congestion at the other two airports. He said McGhee Tyson is at capacity and there is no hangar space available, and Downtown Island has 100 people on its waiting list.
MKAA spokesperson Becky Huckaby has previously said the airport could be funded with a mix of federal funding, state aeronautical commission funding, and local funding from the Airport Authority.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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