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N94 Airport may expand into mobile home community, locals supportive

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Old March 18th 04, 04:03 AM
William Summers
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Default N94 Airport may expand into mobile home community, locals supportive

Airport Neighbors appear favorable to small town airport
expansion, saying they recognize the airport is important to the
local community.

The Carlisle, Pennsylvania airport [N94] currently has a mobile
home community right against its runway. This small town airport
would love to expand (even put in a parallel taxiway) but it is
hemmed in with an Interstate highway on one side of the runway
and the mobile homes on the other. Due to its privately owned
status, it has not had much luck in securing grants to make
improvements. Still, even some Citations do land on its 4004 x
40 foot runway, with non standard markings. It's a great little
airport for a small town, but it needs more help.

Now the airport owners say they would be willing to buy some of
the mobile home properties in order to facilitate improvements.
Surprisingly, owners are positive of the plan, saying they
realize the airport is necessary for the success of Cumberland
county. Carlisle is also home to the US Army War College,
Dickinson College, and Penn State's Law School.

Recently, the Susquehanna Area Regional Airport Authority has
said that it would be interested in buying the airport, which
would make the airport eligbile for more public grants. The
SARAA has also been interested in the Chambersburg Airport to the
south, which would save this airport.

Airport may expand south

By David Blymire, March 17, 2004

Business Airport of Carlisle could expand into a neighboring
mobile home and townhouse community.

The airport unveiled five possible design scenarios Tuesday
picturing a new runway and separate taxiway set up in a variety
of configurations as well as a new hanger and office complex with
aircraft tie-down facilities.

Several designs showed the airport expanding south into the

Residents: Idea fine

But that didn't seem to bother residents who turned out at hangar
12 to view the five concepts.

"I'm all for it," said Lance Graham of Robin Drive at the western
end of the existing runway.

Graham, a father of three children, said he believes an expanded
airport will contribute to a stronger Cumberland County economy.

"My kids have grown up in this community," he said. "There's
nothing here for them."

A key question to be answered is whether a 4,300-foot runway will
work at the existing site, said Ronald Deck of L. Robert Kimball
and Associates, the firm that designed the options.

"Now, it's just looking at the concepts, understanding that there
are positives and negatives" with each, he said.

Common features

The options all feature a 75-foot-wide runway with a separate
taxiway. Several options call for the addition of 300 feet to the
end of the runway. One option would extend the runway east across
Petersburg Road.

Another option would use the existing runway as the taxiway and
build a new runway to the south of the current runway with a
300-foot extension at the west end. Another would build a new
runway and taxiway parallel with Interstate 81.

Deck said the 300-foot extension is not being sought to allow
larger aircraft into the facility but allow aircraft already
based at Carlisle to take off at their maximum weight.

If houses, churches or other buildings fall within the
500-foot-wide "runway protection zone" at either end of the
rebuilt runway, the property owners would be approached with an
offer to buy the properties at fair market value, Deck said.

However, such sales "are not mandatory," he said, adding the
properties would not be condemned.

If a property owner refuses to sell, the airport would seek a
right of first refusal for possible future purchase of the
property, he said.

Mechanic favors jobs

Doug Crout, who lives on Meals Drive near the east end of the
runway, said his only concern is, "Where would they relocate my
mobile home?"

But he said he favors an airport expansion to improve local job

Crout, an unemployed airline mechanic whose resume includes
experience with Allegheny Airlines, said he would discuss the
possibilities with his wife and neighbors before submitting
written comments to the airport.

He would want to know whether the airport would buy his plot, pay
to relocate his mobile home and put his family up during the

Airport co-owner Jim Kingsborough said those questions will have
to be worked out. "It's important to keep this airport and
improve to new standards," he said.

He added other property owners have expressed an interest in
selling to the airport.

The next step will be to choose one design from the five
scenarios presented Tuesday and create a more detailed expansion
plan, Kingsborough said.


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