Airport lands $39-Mln for taxiway expansion

Federal transportation dollars awarded to Airport Commission
Federal transportation dollars awarded to Airport Commission
Airport lands $39-Mln for taxiway expansion Photo credit Chris Greythen

The City of New Orleans and the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY) announced today that the Federal Aviation Administration awarded an additional $39.3 million in grants to MSY, which will be used to help fund an extension to its current taxiway infrastructure.

The grant comes as a part of the FAA’s Airport Improvement Program (AIP), which funds airport infrastructure projects, including runways, taxiways, airport signage, lighting, markings and other critical infrastructure.

The Airport was previously notified that it would be awarded $15.2 million in AIP funds for the taxiway project, and this announcement brings the total federal funding for this project to $54.5 million.

"The work on improving our infrastructure has not and must not stop in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mayor LaToya Cantrell. “Securing funding is especially critical to keep the work moving, and this project will allow for the continued growth and expansion of MSY as we move forward. I am grateful to the leadership team at MSY for continuing to adapt and improve our airport for the new normal, and for all our federal partners who made this funding opportunity a reality.”

The $54.5 million in federal funding will be used toward the extension of the Airport’s Taxiway G and Taxiway B, which connect to MSY’s East-West Runway (11-29).

These taxiway extensions will improve aircraft access to the East-West Runway (11-29).

The project has an estimated cost of $65 million, and is expected to begin later this year. It will consist of extending Taxiway G 1,500 feet to the west of its current location to connect it with Runway 11 end and building out Taxiway B to connect it to Taxiway G.

Crews will also install the required lighting and signage for these extensions. The work is expected to be completed by the end of 2021. Aircraft operations at MSY will continue throughout the project as the Airport has two runways.

"We understand the important role we play as a vital transportation asset for the Greater New Orleans region.

With the challenges brought on by the pandemic, the financial support from our federal partners is more important now than ever," said Hon. Michael Bagneris, Chair of the New Orleans Aviation Board.

"Thanks to this new wave of funding for our taxiways, the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport is well-positioned to accommodate our future needs," said Director of Aviation Kevin Dolliole.

Eighty airports in 25 states received airport infrastructure grants today from the U.S. Department of Transportation through the FAA.

Additionally, earlier this year, the federal government awarded MSY $42.7 million in emergency relief funds under the CARES Act, which distributed a total of $10 billion to airports across the country.

The Airport is using these funds for priority items such as debt service, employee retention and other critical operations.