Planes wait to taxi Tuesday for liftoff at the Augusta State Airport. The commercial apron, in the foreground, will be resurfaced this summer with $900,000 of federal funds. Several runways have already been repaved at the airport this summer. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

AUGUSTA — A nearly $1 million project at the Augusta State Airport will reconstruct, for the first time in at least 20 years, the apron area where commercial operator Cape Air boards passengers and parks its planes.

The project, which Airport Manager John Guimond anticipates will take place late this summer, will be funded with $900,000 from the federal Department of Transportation’s Airport Improvement Program, according to an announcement from U.S. Sen. Susan Collins.

Waterville’s Robert Lafleur Airport will also get $300,000 from the same federal program to update its airport master plan.

The apron area at Augusta State Airport, which will be reconstructed, is in front of the airport’s terminal and where Cape Air’s commercial planes park, during the day and overnight, and where they load and unload passengers.

Guimond said the pavement in that area is cracked and in need of replacement.

“It hasn’t been paved in — I don’t even know — I’ve been here 20 years and it has never been paved in that time,” Guimond said Tuesday. “It needs it. It’s beyond crack-sealing.”


He said the project should take between two and three weeks and will likely be done in August or September.

The project is not expected to disrupt commercial flights at the airport, which is owned by the state and run by the city under the terms of a long-term agreement. Guimond said Cape Air’s planes will just be parked and loaded and unloaded in another area during the reconstruction work. He said he’d work with the Department of Homeland Security to determine where that temporary loading area will be.

Augusta State Airport Director John Guimond stands in the lobby on Tuesday of Cape Air at the Augusta State Airport. The apron that the park flights park on will be resurfaced this summer with $900,000 of federal funds. Several runways have also been repaved at the airport this summer. Andy Molloy/Kennebec Journal

Guimond said the general, noncommercial aviation apron area at Augusta State Airport also is in need of replacement, a project he hopes to secure funding to do within the next couple of years.

Cape Air, the commercial airline that operates out of the airport, has four daily flights to Boston in the summer and three daily flights in the winter.

The airport has about 23,000 flights a year, including Cape Air, flight school, charter and general aviation flights. Cape Air accounts for 2,548 of those annual flights.

Maine Instrument Flight is the airport’s fixed base operator, offering flight training, charter services, fuel, aircraft sales, rentals and maintenance.


The federal funding was announced by Collins, who is the ranking member of the Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, as part of nearly $2 million in funding for Maine airports.

“Airports promote job creation and economic development, expand access to health care in rural regions, and provide an essential transportation option in large states like Maine,” Collins said in the announcement.

In Waterville, the Robert LaFleur Airport is receiving $300,000 to be used to update the airport’s master plan. Airport manager Randy Marshall said the last time the airport updated its master plan was 10 years ago, in 2012. Part of that plan was redoing the runway, which was completed in 2015.

Robert LaFleur Airport manager Randy Marshall, left, speaks with guests at a Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours event in 2013 at the airport. The airport expects to receive $300,000 in federal funds to update its master plan. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel file

Much of what is included in the Robert LaFleur Airport master plan is set with the purpose of accommodating the needs of those it serves. However, Marshall noted if something isn’t included in the master plan, grant funding cannot be used for it.

“Here in Waterville, I think we’re in an exceptional position to work on some finer details as we’ve completed the bigger projects,” Marshall said.

All the goals in their current master plan have been achieved, Marshall said, so a new master plan might include constructing a new terminal building, reviewing existing programs, identifying news projects and improving the safety of the airport.

“This master plan is really going to help us identify the future of the airport,” Marshall said.

Other Maine airports getting funding include Central Maine Airport of Norridgewock, which will get $180,000 to seal its runway, taxiway and apron surface pavement joints.

Morning Sentinel reporter Haley Hersey contributed to this report. 

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