The FMAA has identified a plan to address FAA design deficiencies at Friedman Memorial Airport and is exploring ways to improve reliability and increase air service. The latest updates regarding these efforts and others are outlined below.
Improvements to Friedman Memorial Airport - The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has indicated that the Airport has design deficiencies that, if not remedied, could result in the reduction or elimination of some air service. As such, FMAA partnered with the FAA to study ways to meet the design standards (C-III) for aircraft that use the Airport currently. The team has identified a plan to meet Congressionally-mandated runway safety area (RSA) requirements by the December 31, 2015 deadline and is currently in the process of implementing it.
Runway Safety Area (RSA) Improvements Projects
- Project 1: Relocate hangar taxi lane/overlay apron/security fence improvements. Project is completed.
- Project 2: Relocate/extend Taxiway B and runway safety area grading. Project is completed.
- Project 3: Terminal reconfiguration. The notice to proceed was issued on November 3. Work is underway including excavation, concrete footings and utilities. The project has been modified to limit the impacts on the traveling public. The recent cold and wet weather has been a challenge but the project is still on schedule.
- Project 4: Airport Operations Building (AOB). The notice to proceed was issued on November 3. Work is underway including excavation, footings and stem walls. The recent cold and wet weather has been a challenge but the project is still on schedule.
- Project 5: Terminal apron reconstruction/site preparation. Project completed. There have been several change orders, mainly due to underground utilities, which added about 10 days of additional time. The project is on budget.
- Project 5A: Gate relocations. Project is completed.
- Project 6: Relocate Taxiway B/remove Taxiway A/north apron. Board approved negotiated fee and authorized Chair to sign work order for professional services associated with this project with a not-to-exceed fee of $895,265 once FAA concurrence with award was received. FAA concurrence was received in late December, the work order is signed and design is underway.
- Facility/hangar acquisitions: Project is completed. Construction of new hangars underway. Demolition of the hangars will take place during or before Project 6.
- The RSA Improvements Projects will bring Friedman Memorial Airport into compliance with FAA Safety Area Design Standards. They will allow Friedman to survive and thrive with the type and size of aircraft that currently use the airport. They do not address the reliability issues at Friedman, although some improvement in reliability has come with the change to regional jets. FMAA continues to work with the FAA to explore new strategies to improve reliability. The RSA Improvements Projects also have the effect of limiting the space needed to sustain ongoing airport operations effectively, such as for snow removal/storage and aircraft parking.
Pursuit of a replacement airport
A replacement airport is likely the best long-term solution for air service to this community. Critical components in the replacement airport process would include locating a feasible site, building community support, identifying and developing funding sources and evaluating operational feasibility.
- Master Plan
- Drafts of the inventory chapter and aviation forecast memo were presented at December Board Meeting. These two elements are the foundation of the Master Plan helping to determine what the future needs of the airport will be. The consultant team discussed the chapters with the Board and took their comments. Goal is to present an inventory and forecast chapter to the Board and the FAA in the January/February time frame.
- Fly Sun Valley Alliance Update:
- FSVA working with busing partner, Sun Valley Express, on improvements to service.
- FSVA has received the draft Summer Visitors Survey and will report findings to the Board soon.
- Seattle, Los Angeles, Denver and San Francisco flights scheduled to resume mid-December.
- Load factors for October were very strong.
- SUN Instrument Approach Improvements, Phase 2
- After the Approach Procedure Improvement Study was completed in Spring 2013, FMAA shared the findings with the FAA. They recently responded and informed FMAA that they agree, improvements are possible, that they are looking at the RNP approach at SUN and that they support the idea of having a consultant work on public approaches.
- In coordination with the FAA flight procedures office, we have hired Dailey Airspace Consulting to further explore optimizing existing RNAV (GPS) W and X approaches, optimizing existing RNAV (RNP) missed approach, and design of new RNAV (GPS) LP approach.
- Tentative date for draft report and designs is February 2015
- The Independent Board Member position currently held by Ron Fairfax expires December 31, 2014. At the December meeting, the Board reappointed him to a two year term, or until such time as the Board chooses to replace him with another independent member. The Board has established a process for soliciting candidates interested in serving as an Independent Board Member and is currently seeking applicants.
back to top
Photo: (Header) Planes at Friedman Memorial Airport - by Nils Ribi