Wednesday, August 12th, 2020

Armstrong airport officials tour $1.6M terminal building

4,700-square-foot facility nearing completion

By Sydney Albert

Members of the Auglaize County Airport Authority, which governs the Neil Armstro. . .

NEW KNOXVILLE - Auglaize Airport Authority members toured the long-awaited new terminal at Neil Armstrong Airport on Tuesday evening as work on the building nears completion.
The 4,700-square-foot building is part of a $1.6 million project at the county-owned airport. Furnishings have already arrived, and airport manager Ted Bergstrom noted in a report to airport authority members that construction was on track to be completed later this month.
The building could likely be ready for occupancy sometime in September, and officials may plan a grand opening celebration to follow in the spring, Bergstrom said.
Visitors will enter into a large waiting area with plenty of windows to let in natural light and to allow people to view planes arriving and taking off on the runway. The area would have lounging furniture, and people could sit by a fireplace and watch TV in the colder months.
The building also includes a manager's office, a kitchen and vending area, restrooms, storage and utility rooms, an information technology room and a small pilot restroom and lounge.
The project has taken a long time to develop. Officials originally had hoped to build and complete the terminal in time for last summer's 50th anniversary of Neil Armstrong's walk on the moon, but the project faced delays when initially no one bid on the work.
At that time in 2018, county officials were unsure if the lack of bids had been due to a good construction economy keeping contractors busy, a high price for materials after recently imposed tariffs and high demand or some other cause.
The project was taken back to the drawing board as officials sought to lower costs and review the terminal's initial design. The estimated price of the terminal fluctuated as officials reviewed their options, but in October, officials finally settled on Baumer Construction as the contractor.
Matt Quinter of Baumer Construction said crews were doing their best to complete the building despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Donors who contributed enough toward the project will also soon receive a special medallion with a letter of appreciation for their contributions.
The airport has reported a year-to-date profit of about $28,457. While the pandemic has affected fuel sales, the airport is still having a strong year considering the circumstances, officials reported.
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District to enact safety protocols, hold staff training
CELINA - The start of the school year has been pushed back a week to give principals, teachers and staff extra time to enact safety protocols and train to limit the spread of COVID-19 and assign students to classrooms. [More]
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CELINA - The number of COVID-19 cases in Mercer County increased by five on Tuesday, bringing the county's number of confirmed cases to 627.
In Auglaize County, three new cases raised the number of that county's confirmed cases to 263.
CELINA - City officials anticipate a 13% drop in local government funds next year due to the reduction in state revenue related to the coronavirus pandemic.
WAPAKONETA - Auglaize County has seen more than 50 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the start of the month, according to county health department officials.
ROCKFORD - Parkway Local Schools staff are focusing on their back-to-school plans and options as the start of the school year peers around the corner
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