Some Connecticut construction jobs will soon be created when a local airport gets a makeover.
The State of Connecticut recently announced that the Connecticut Development Authority has issued $9 million in industrial revenue bonds for renovations at Sikorsky Memorial Airport. The money should create jobs at the airport and increase capacity for more aircraft.
â€œImprovements at Sikorsky Airport will continue to build on our efforts to attract and grow businesses,â€ Governor M. Jodi Rell said. â€œWith its proximity to Interstate 95 and other major highways, Sikorsky can develop into an essential hub for not only the region but for all of Connecticut. The CDA financing underscores our commitment to this smart growth initiative.â€
The bonds will be issued to Aviation Facilities Group, LLC, the company that won a contract to upgrade the Bridgeport-owned airport in 2005. The renovations are expected to replace a passenger terminal that has been vacant for more than 10 years when the airport halted commercial services.
Overall, the renovations will include: a 35,000 square-foot aircraft storage hangar; a fixed-based operation terminal; a fueling facility and 2,000-square-feet of office space for airport staff.
The airport is currently responsible for housing corporate jets and hopes the renovations will attract new clients. Volo Aviation, which is AFG’s main tenant, hopes the added space will also help create jobs for pilots, maintenance personnel, fueling attendance, customer service representatives and a station manager.
News of the airport’s renovations may help boost the state’s declining construction industry. Connecticut’s construction industry employed 66,500 workers during November 2008, according to the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is down from 67,200 workers during October 2008 and a decrease of 3.5 percent from last year.