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Gordon K. Bush Airport

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Airport type  Public
Elevation AMSL  766 ft / 233 m
7/25  5,600
Code  ATO
Owner  Ohio University
Serves  Athens / Albany, Ohio
Website  www.ohiou.edu/airport/
5,600  1,707
Elevation  234 m
Gordon K. Bush Airport

Ohio University Airport or Gordon K. Bush Airport (IATA: ATO, ICAO: KUNI, FAA LID: UNI), also known as Snyder Field, is a public-use airport on State Route 32/U.S. 50 in the village of Albany, about ten miles (16 km) southwest of Athens, in Athens County, Ohio.

Contents

The airport is owned by Ohio University in Athens, not to be confused with Ohio State University in Columbus, which owns the Ohio State University Airport (IATA/FAA: OSU).

Most U.S. airports use the same three-letter location identifier for the FAA and IATA, but Ohio University Airport is UNI to the FAA and ATO to the IATA (which assigned UNI to the airport on Union Island in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines).

History

Athens County's first airport was just a few miles east of Athens on U.S. 50. The Rowland Family used to own that airport until Ohio University purchased it in 1943. The airport was used for civil aviation and the university's flying program. In the 1960s the Athens Bypass was planned to run through the airport's land, and the university decided to look for a new location.

The university finally chose a location just west of Albany and the airport opened around 1972 with a 4,200-foot (1,300 m) runway and a couple of hangars. The airport was renamed for university trustee and aviation supporter, Gordon K. Bush. To bring economic expansion to Athens County, major construction began on the airport in 2002 with the construction of the C. David Snyder Terminal and the extension of the runway to 5600 feet.

Facilities

Ohio University Airport covers 308 acres (125 ha) and has one asphalt runway, (7/25), 5,600 x 100 ft. (1,707 x 30 m) long.

The airport offers fuel services, pilot snooze room, flight training, and mechanics on site.

In 2005 the airport had 51,600 aircraft operations, average 141 per day: 99% general aviation, <1% air taxi and <1% military. 48 aircraft are based at this airport: 88% single-engine, 10% multi-engine and 2% jet.

Aviation Program

The aviation program started training pilots in 1939. Today the students can train in state-of-the-art glass-paneled aircraft. Piper Warrior aircraft were purchased in the summer of 2004. The chairman of the program is Bryan Branham. The chief flight instructor is Ron Faliszek. Mr. Faliszek also trains students in classrooms providing some of the ground school education before the students enter a plane. The training aircraft consist of 8 Piper Warrior 3's, 2 Piper Arrow 3's, 2 Cessna 152's, and 2 Beachcraft Baron. The students will earn private pilot through multi-engine instructor in these planes along with an associate degrees in Aviation Technology and Bachelor of Science degrees in Aviation Science. Ohio University's Avionics Engineering Center is the only facility of its kind in the United States. The Avionics Center specializes in the research, development, and evaluation of electronic navigation and communication.

Construction

In 2002 the airport expanded its runway from 4,200 feet to 5,600 feet to accommodate larger aircraft. At this time the decision was made to also start work on the C. David Snyder Terminal. In 2009 a 3.15 million dollar grant was awarded to the airport from the American Recovery and Reinvestment act to improve the safety of the airport by filling in valleys and removing hills that surrounded the airport. Currently the airport is looking to rehabilitate the runway, a project that's estimated to cost around 3-4 million dollars.

Maintenance

Ohio University's machines are A&P and IA certified and specializes in Cessna, Beech, Piper, Mooney, and Bellanca airframes. They also specialize in Lycoming and Continental engines. “The FAA has declared Ohio University Airport a certified repair station. “That was a big step for us to meet all of their requirements,” -Ken Carly .

References

Gordon K. Bush Airport Wikipedia


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