New efforts to expand Hannibal’s airport

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It’s a renewed effort to an old idea, expanding the runway at Hannibal Regional Airport.

Economic developers said an expanded runway could pave the way for more business in the area.

“It’s not going to be a commercial service airport like Quincy but the value here is the assistance to companies,” Northeast Missouri Economic Development Council Executive Director George Walley.

That’s why Hannibal’s finance director, Karen Burditt, said a proposal has been submitted that would fully fund the $6.5 million project.

The proposal is a 100% federally funded grant meaning the city wouldn’t have to pay anything.

“There’s going to be a lot of airports out there competing for this and so hopefully we can get some support at the federal level so that we have a shot at this,” said Burditt

With the airport’s runway at 4,440 feet, right now the city says they’re missing out by not being equipped to handle more business.

“The weather has to be idea,” explained Burditt. “We can’t have the wind. If they have too much fuel or depending on how many passengers they have, they can’t land at our airport so by extending the runway we would open it up to so much more traffic.”

More traffic and more possibilities including at the city’s new industrial park near the hospital.

“Any improvement to the airport that supports larger aircraft enhances our capabilities to market that park to new manufacturing opportunities,” said Walley.

Burditt said they hope to hear an answer on the grant by February.

Brett Knese

Brett Knese

Multi-Media Journalist at WGEM News.

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