Bennet, Udall Congratulate Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport on Securing $7 Million Competitive Grant for Runway Upgrades

Improvements will allow airport to remain a resource for fighting wildfires

Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and Mark Udall welcomed the Federal Aviation Administration’s decision today to award the Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport a competitive $7.2 million grant from the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) to rehabilitate and repave the main runway of the airport.

Over the past several years, the airport has become an important staging ground for wildfire response.  The U.S. Forest Service and other first responders have used the runway heavily, along with civilian traffic. The grant will help the airport make capital improvements to restore the runway, allowing it to remain a resource when needed.

“Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport is an asset to the region’s safety and its commerce,”  Bennet said.  “These upgrades mean we’ll continue to see the airport play a role in job creation and protecting and preserving Colorado lives and property.

“The unprecedented wildfire seasons Colorado has had over the past several years have proven just how crucial a quick response and multi-pronged attacks can be in fighting wildfires,” Udall said. “Minutes can make the difference in saving lives and property, and this competitive grant will help the Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport ensure its main runway is in tip-top shape to support firefighting efforts in neighboring communities.”

The AIP was reauthorized in the 2012 FAA Reauthorization and is designed to increase the planning and development of public-use airports that make significant contributions to national and regional air transportation.