The Durant Airport Advisory Board met Monday at Durant Regional Airport to take care of airport business.
The group led by Durant dentist and pilot Dan Craige discussed the proposed expansion of the runway as well as sealing the tarmac.
An essential piece of navigation equipment is in need of repair. The AWOS, Airport Weather Operating System is what helps a pilot navigate the airways.
Community Development Director for the City of Durant Marty Cook said, “It checks your humidity, temperature, and all that. It also checks the ceiling so when a pilot is coming in for landing, it tells them where the air changes in the atmosphere. Ours isn’t working and it’s an expensive part. We are working on that. We also hope to fix the runway lights. They were under temporary repair. We are doing that this week. We have an electrician coming in to fix them for good.”
The Ceilomomter will cost $30,000 to purchase but is an essential piece of equipment for Durant’s airport. Cook said, “We will get that navigation system running. I’ll have to find the money for it.”
Choctaw Nation, FAA through their grant, the City of Durant, and the OAG, Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission.
Cook said, “We want to make the runway bigger to land bigger planes. Right now a heavy plane loaded with a full tank can’t take off. They are too heavy. They take off with half a tank.”
The City sells fuel and that’s an important revenue stream for the operation of the airport. Having a bigger runway will attract more customers to the airport.
Airport Director Dewayne Williams said, “We’ll add about 1800 feet to the runway. We’ll attract and be able to accommodate bigger planes for our airport.
The airport has a high-end client that recently attracted paparazzi to Durant. Ada, Oklahoma native, star of NBC’s “The Voice and country singer Blake Shelton flies into the airport regularly.
He has a jet and a helicopter that shuttle him and Gwen Stefani to his homes in Tishomingo and Soldier Creek at Lake Texoma. He houses both air vehicles at the Durant Airport.
One official said, “If we make the runway longer, Blake Shelton can get a bigger plane!”
Contact Dan Pennington at (580) 634-2162 or firstname.lastname@example.org