Oakdale and Modesto City-County Airport will both receive significant grant funds from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in an effort to enhance protection for their runways.
Oakdale will receive $91,000 and Modesto will receive $305,000.
The Oakdale grant will enable the airport to continue its pavement management project, which according to Michael Renfrow, Oakdale City Senior Engineering Technician, is much-needed and well-overdue as more than $5 million worth of work is needed.
“The grant funds will be used to fund the study of the pavement plan,” Renfrow explained. “We will take every dollar of fall-out funds available. The FAA knows we are prepared to utilize those additional funds.”
In recent years, Oakdale City has become more proactive about going after grant funding to help revitalize the local airport, which had fallen into disrepair after some lean years. But, according to Renfrow, that’s all about to change as exciting plans for the future of the airport are already in motion.
“We’ve developed a wonderful relationship with the FAA. It’s really exciting,” Renfrow said of the projected improvements. “Recently, we’ve been working on long term leases for aviation businesses and in the next year, we anticipate building more hangars.”
Currently, the runway falls short of larger aircraft charter work, but plans are in the works to extend the runway to the required 4,000 feet to accommodate larger charters.
In a statement, Congressional Representative Josh Harder said of the grant allocation, “Every dollar makes a difference when it comes to keeping our airports up and running. This federal support will help us keep our passengers and our cargo safe as folks fly into Modesto and Oakdale each day. I’ll keep fighting to bring resources to the Valley, and these grants will go a long way for our airports.”