Pilots meet with council to discuss future of airport

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 6/4/96.

The Paynesville City Council was seeking an answer to a question May 29 during a public hearing..should the airport property be closed and developed, or should the airport be expanded and improved?

The present airport is located on the west side of Paynesville along Highway 23. It offers significant potential for economic development projects. Built up along the airport at present are: Municipal Liquor Store, Subway, Yarmon Ford and Mercury, and the Country Inn. Potential development could include a fast food restaurant, gas station, or a retail store.

Mayor Joe Voss informed those in attendance the city is concerned about the liability of the airport without official status. The FAA has placed landing restrictions on the airport due to the trees on the golf course and powerlines on the northwest end.

Walter Moorhouse, an Eden Valley pilot, informed the council that about 50 planes land at the airport per week. He added the airport is usable 325 days of the year.

Andy Winstrom flew in from Omaha to attend the meeting. "I have been flying into Paynesville almost every weekend for 15 years. The airport is located at a great site. It is close to the motel, eating establishments and a car rental facility. It would be a shame to close it." After hearing from the pilots, the council formed a task force to explore the feasibility of upgrading and expanding the airport at its present site.

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