August 16, 2002
AOPA President Phil Boyer joined Mayor Robert Lentz and other local dignitaries in Bellefontaine, Ohio, for the grand opening of a brand-new $13 million municipal airport today. It is only the second new airport in Ohio in 30 years.
"This is a real community story of people sticking together to build a dream," Boyer told the large dedication crowd. "They clearly know and appreciate the value of local airports." In his remarks at the ceremony, Boyer noted that the number of public-use GA airports has been declining for many years, with nearly 25 percent fewer public-use airports today than in 1969.
The new airport is a replacement for the old Bellefontaine Municipal Airport and will retain the same identifier: 7-India 7. It's not even charted yet but is located four miles west of the old airport at N 40 22 20.33, W 83 49 08.46. It features a 5,000-foot runway, a new terminal building, and 10 new T-hangars, with 10 more under construction.
Planning for the airport began 20 years ago, when Mayor Lentz, then a city councilman, began pushing for a replacement airfield. The plan originally faced strong opposition, but over time, and with the help of the aviation community, Lentz won enough support for the project to go ahead.
The community effort continued when a local businessman and area pilot agreed to buy the current FBO owner's business and take over management of the airport for the city.
Bombardier has launched the 12-passenger Challenger 650 with an order from launch customer NetJets.
Sabreliner isn't just for Sabreliners anymore. New owners and management have recast it as a jet refurbishment and parts center.
Nextant, rebuilder of the Beechcraft Hawker 400 and King Air 90, has named Piedmont Aircraft as the eastern dealer for the Nextant 400XTi and the G90XT.
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