Jonesboro Municipal Airport working on repairs after tornado

Hangar repair crucial, airport relies on hangar rentals for revenue, officials say
Updated: Jun. 24, 2020 at 9:21 PM CDT
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - The tornado that hit Jonesboro is still leaving its mark as the Jonesboro Municipal Airport still tries to repair issues caused following the devastation.

Manager George Jackson says hangars that store the airplanes take priority in repairs. That’s because the hangars generates revenue for the airport.

He says right now, they need it. Before the tornado, he says the airport sustained itself. Now, it’s important to keep a close watch on money coming in.

The tornado caused damage to everything at the airport from runways and lights while hangars, planes, and more saw severe damage.

Now, both runways operate at full capacity and 24/7. All airfield lighting is also operational, allowing planes to land at night.

Jackson says the airport is working to secure an FAA grant, worth $1.6 million. The grant is to upgrade their current airfield lights.

The automated weather system now mostly operates, as well. Jackson says he’s taking it a day at a time to make the repairs.

“Little things you don’t think of like the windsock, that being missing, getting that back up and going. It’s big, huge,” he says. “Airports have to have a windsock; you need weather reporting. All of those things that we’ve been missing are coming back.”

Jackson wants to see more construction to replace structures still destroyed at the airport this year.

He says it will take years before the airport looks and operates the way it did before March 28.

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