Recent projects at Lee’s Summit Municipal Airport (LXT) in Missouri took nearly 20 years to complete, but with a new runway extension and acquisition of a hangar complex, the airport is now positioned to attract more business.
Lee’s Summit, 16 miles southeast of Kansas City, is one of the fastest growing communities in the state of Missouri, according to Airport Manager John Ohrazda.
“We started these projects in 1999, and as is the case with any airport project, we had to work through the many environmental, public comment and planning processes,” he said in a post on the No Plane, No Gain website.
“Now completed, these airport improvements will help bring new companies with good, high-paying jobs to the area,” he added. “Our local chamber and industrial committee have been key supporters of the airport as they know our improved business aviation amenities will benefit the region as an economic engine.”
Designed to accommodate larger business aircraft, the runway extension to 5,501 feet included thickening of the runway surface and widening to 100 feet, which adds greater capacity to the airport’s two-runway layout.
“About 70% of our operations are business related, but with only a 4,016-foot main runway before, it limited operations by some business aircraft,” Ohrazda said. “Within three days of opening the longer runway 18/36, the number of operations and size of aircraft increased.”
The acquisition of a large hangar adds space to the airport’s FBO, which is operated by the city of Lee’s Summit.
“The purchase of Hangar 1 allows the airport to better accommodate business aviation operators,” said Ohrazda, “We’ve renovated the FBO lobby, pilot’s lounge, sleep room and added maintenance space to meet a growing need for additional services as a full-service FBO.”
With its proximity to the Kansas City metro area, Ohrazda said the airport improvements would also attract more tourism-related operations.
“Lee’s Summit serves as a gateway to the region, and we see a large amount of traffic for Royals and Chiefs games because we are close to the stadiums,” he said. “And some of the greatest barbeque establishments in the country are nearby, so business aviation users can eat well when they operate to and from LXT.”