A grant from the Missouri Department of Transportation to revitalize about 10 acres of property at Springfield-Branson National Airport (KSGF) has served as a catalyst for improvement projects to meet increased demand.
According to a report on the No Plane, No Gain website, the project included removing unused parking lots and old buildings to build access taxiways, roads, and utilities to support construction of new general aviation hangars.
The project has generated more than 60,000 square feet of hangar development, with one hangar completed and two others under construction.
“I knew there was interest in this type of project, but demand has even exceeded my expectations,” said Brian Weiler, director of aviation at Springfield-Branson National Airport.
According to Weiler, the demand for the largest hangars has been overwhelming. He credits this partly to flight departments based at the airport upgrading to newer, larger aircraft.
Springfield-Branson serves as a port of entry, and a new $1.2 million U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility recently opened at the airport.
In addition to these expansions, a new Part 141 training center in partnership with Ozarks Technical Community College was developed to help meet demand for future pilots.
“The school opened this fall at full capacity with a waiting list,” said Weiler. “They are already discussing expansion for future school years.”
The airport contributes more than $500 million to the regional economy with around 2,000 jobs at the airport, including those based in the old airline terminal, which is now leased as office space to travel- and aviation-related businesses.