From the pages of
The Sublette County Journal
Volume 4, Number 36 - 5/4/00
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Pinedale Airport to Get $3.1 Million Facelift
Stage set for future commercial flights
by Rob Shaul

The Pinedale Airport will be the subject of a major facelift and upgrade this summer. According to Pinedale Airport Board Chairman Allen Kinnison.

The total cost of the project is estimated at $3.1 million, of which just $60,000 will be funded by local government. The Town of Pinedale and the County government are each providing $30,000 of the project, says Mr. Kinnison. The rest of the funding is coming from the State and Federal government.

The project has four major components: (1) resurfacing the existing runway; (2) building a new taxiway; (3) installing a new lighting system, and (4) fencing the runway and two 1000 foot "obstacle free zones" on either end of the runway.

The current runway is 15 years old and in clear need of resurfacing says Mr. Kinnison. Currently, the old runway is used as the taxiway. The project will tear up the old runway, which is in disrepair, and a new taxiway will be constructed to replace it.

Mr. Kinnison says the current lighting system is 20 years old, and it is simply difficult to find replacement parts.

Finally, fencing the runway and obstacle free zones is a safety issue designed primarily to keep wildlife off the runway.

As a result of this summer's work, Mr. Kinnison says the Pinedale Airport's category will be upgraded, potentially paving the way for commercial airlines to provide small commuter flight service here down the road. He cautions, however, that commercial service is a long way out, and will take more services and recruiting. "This is such a pretty place, I could see a Skywest bringing in a 19-passenger flight a day," says Mr. Kinnison, looking into the future.

Mr. Kinnison does feel that the Airport's upgrade will increase business and executive jet flights into Pinedale. He expects a 50% increase in jet flights as a result of the upgrade, primarily from Jackson Airport overflow.

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