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Airport projects, their costs, and air show planning dominated most of the Salida Airport Advisory Committee meeting this past week.

At 7,523′, “ANK” is the FAA code for Salida Airport, Harriet Alexander Field. Courtesy logo

Airport Director Zech Papp reported he received estimates and design concepts on the proposed new terminal building at Harriet Alexander Field (Salida Airport), and says that he plans  another meeting with the architects on the surprising projected cost estimate.

The current concept design estimates came in at around $10 million and Papp said he has some questions concerning those construction and design plans.

Papp also updated board members on other future airport projects, including the aging field fuel farm facility, destined to be replaced perhaps in 2024, including the removal of the underground tank and replacement with an above-ground unit. He also said he’ll explore state grants to clean up the old fuel site. Papp told the committee that field fuel sales have been going well.

The airport’s Automated Weather Observation System (AWOS) was also discussed. Papp said plans were submitted to the Federal Aviation Administration last week and that the project could be put out for bids in the next couple of week after a current maintenance inspection.

Also on the future project list is the planned and budgeted expansion of the airport equipment shop to enable equipment to be stored inside and work to be done in the building. He said another bid has been received, but the work could cost more than what had been budgeted. Projects at the airport last year totaled about $1.2 million.

The addition of a flight instructor and flying lessons at Harriet Alexander Field is underway on a three-month trial period, and has been well-received. Certified instructor Dean Mason is utilizing a leased Cessna 172 plane for instruction. Papp said it is one of the only flight training aircraft available in the wider Central Colorado county area. Interested persons can contact Mason at 719-966-9947 or

One of the multi-passenger turboprop planes owned by Colorado by Air charter service at Salida Airport. Photo by Dan Smith.

The airport will post an opening for another part-time position soon, Papp noted, saying that the increase in traffic over the last couple of years has created a need for additional employees.

The planned airport airshow on September 16 was also discussed, with Papp saying he is lining up performers for aerobatics and skydiving demonstrations for the popular event. Organizers plan to include a Knights of Columbus pancake breakfast and static displays of various types of aircraft.

Featured image: Aviator Dagmar Kress performs at a past show at Salida Airport with her biplane. The popular event will return this September. Dan Smith photo.