Hendry County staff, elected officials and representatives from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) along with contractors, consultants and community partners celebrated the grand opening of the new LaBelle Airport terminal building with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday, August 23.
The total project which includes the terminal building, aircraft parking apron expansion and aircraft parking apron rehabilitation was funded by the FDOT at $3,065,200.00, the FAA at $2,534,500.00 and Hendry County at $21,300.
“We are happy to say that the terminal project itself was funded 100 percent by FDOT and FAA,” says Hendry County Public Works Director, Shane Parker. “Hendry County is incredibly thankful to our state and federal partners who made this project possible.”
The new terminal is 6,240 square feet in size and replaces the airport’s 400 square foot terminal. The terminal provides improved access and security for the airport and consists of a pilot’s lounge, conference room, airport management and operations area and restaurant space which will be the new home for a local eatery later this year.
Additionally, the project included 36 vehicle parking spaces, 7,000 square yards of new aircraft parking apron, 14,000 square yards of aircraft parking apron rehabilitation and 22 aircraft tie down spaces.
“As a pilot myself, I am very excited about the new terminal and know that this beautiful building will be one that attracts pilots to Hendry County from all across the State of Florida,” said County Commissioner Mike Swindle. “It’s fantastic to see us as a County becoming a serious part of the aviation conversation.”
The terminal concept was designed by Hendry County staff and has features meant to display the character of LaBelle with a space that embodies an old Florida, southern charm feel.
AECOM was the design engineer of record for the project. The terminal building and apron expansion project was constructed by Owen-Ames-Kimball and the apron rehabilitation project was constructed by Wright Construction.
The terminal is the first newly built government building in Hendry County since 2008.
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