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Frederick Municipal Airport control tower work gets under way
[March 19, 2011]

Frederick Municipal Airport control tower work gets under way

Mar 19, 2011 (The Frederick News-Post - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Construction of the Frederick Municipal Airport control tower began this week, as a number of concrete precast walls were erected on the far east side of the airport.

The $5.3 million project, paid for through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, has been in the works for about a decade. It received funding late last year.

Walls as high as the second floor have been assembled on the site, according to Airport Manager Kevin Daugherty. General contractor Warner Construction is also adding a waterline and conduits for cable, Internet and utilities.

The six-floor tower will be built in segments. A portion of precast concrete will be installed and then reinforced with steel before another section is placed. Each piece of wall is built off-site and then transported to the airport.

Road construction, utility installation and storm-water management facilities have already been completed, making room for tower construction.

Crews have completed about 25 percent of the project, Daugherty said on Friday.

"Things are going well, he said. "It's going to really start escalating as we start adding stories to the tower." The 106-foot tower will overlook the airport's two licensed runways: primary runway 5/23 and secondary runway 12/30. It will be staffed by Federal Aviation Administration contract controllers.

An expected 18-month construction schedule puts the tower on track to open mid-fall.

"As always, that is subject to the weather," Daugherty said.

Crews are working Monday through Friday, but won't disturb regular airport affairs.

The Frederick Municipal Airport, the second-busiest in the state, has never had a control tower; the area's weather observation tower is often mistaken as a traffic control center.

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