By AOPA ePublishing staff
Nine years after two general aviation airports near Austin closed, the tireless efforts of AOPA and other aviation advocates to restore GA to central Texas are bearing fruit.
AOPA Southwest Regional Representative Shelly deZevallos and AOPA Vice President of Local Airport Advocacy Bill Dunn met April 29 with Jim Craig, manager of Bird’s Nest Airport, to discuss ongoing renovation and expansion projects.
The terminal building already has been remodeled, the existing runway has been repaved and remarked, and a self-fuel island has been installed. Bidding is under way for a new runway, hangars, and other infrastructure developments at the privately owned airport located 12 miles northeast of Austin.
The airport’s progress comes courtesy of Houston businessman Ron Henriksen, a pilot who purchased Bird’s Nest with intent of creating a public-use field for the piston crowd. AOPA’s Dunn and deZevallos have met on several occasions with Henriksen to discuss the value and importance of expanding and updating the airport.
“Austin’s GA community owes a tremendous debt of gratitude to Ron Henriksen,” Dunn said. “He has done what local government couldn’t do, even under a state law directing the construction of a new GA airport in central Texas.”
Bird’s Nest is not Henriksen’s first foray into the airport business. He also built and operates Houston Executive Airport and Henriksen Jet Center.
May 1, 2008