Runway Extension Makes HTS Longest Commercial Runway in WV
The new 500 foot runway extension at Huntington Tri-State Airport was dedicated at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday, April 21st. U.S. Senator Jay Rockefeller, U.S. Representataive Nick Rahall, and WV Speaker of the House Rick Thompson were among the dignitaries that cut the ribbon.
The runway was recently extended to 7,016 feet, establishing it as the longest runway in West Virginia of those airports having commercial air service. Martinsburg has a longer runway at 7,815 feet, but it's used for private and military aircraft only. While the primary purpose of the project was to improve the safety area “overrun” distance to meet FAA standard guidelines of 1,000 ft. of surface beyond the usable runway end, the extension also provides the additional benefit of allowing larger aircraft to use the facility and existing aircraft to take more fuel and fly further distances.
"Tri-State Airport's growth over the past two years has been remarkable, and this extension works toward our goal of keeping West Virginia's airports safe and efficient. The addition of 500 feet to their runway is a big deal and means great things for the airport and the entire community," said Rockefeller, who is chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.
"There are those who are determined to run an airport and make it grow like this one. I salute all of you for making it what it is," said U.S. Congressman Rahall. "You have done a tremendous job."
'This is the most important 1.5 mile stretch of asphalt in the region. Without it, we can't attract or retain commerce," said Airport Board Member and Ashland City Commissioner Kevin Gunderson.
The total cost of the runway extension was approximately $11.2 million and it took four years to complete.