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Meridian Regional Airport ready for facelift

By By Steve Swogetinsky/The Meridian Star
Feb. 11, 2001
The Meridian Regional Airport is about to get a facelift.
Airport manager Tom Williams said the entire front of the building will change once a 60×90 foot permanent canopy is constructed at the cost of $1.5 million. The project also includes covering the sidewalk in front of the building.
The new canopy will extend from the front of the terminal building to the front of the short-term parking. Once complete, there will be two covered dropoff lanes in front of the terminal building and two in the parking lot.
Jellenc Construction Inc. of Meridian received the contract. Williams said work would start as soon as the weather breaks.
Williams said 90 percent of the work will be funded through a grant from the Federal Aviation Administration. Five percent of the money will come from aviation fuel tax from the state, and the rest will come from a local passenger use tax.
Figures show that 32,314 people boarded at the Meridian Regional Airport during the year 2000, which was down 1.9 percent when compared to the previous year. However, there was a 6.9 percent increase in January of this year (2,259 boardings) when compared to the same month, a year ago.
The airport is serviced by Northwest Airlink and ASA Delta Connection. Northwest Airlink offers three flights to connections to Memphis, and three flights in from Memphis. ASA has two flights to and from Dallas, and four flights to-and-from Atlanta.
Williams said the Meridian Airport Authority is always looking for new ways to increase its boarding numbers.
Steve Swogetinsky is regional editor of The Meridian Star. E-mail him at sswogetinsky@themeridianstar.com.

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