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County airpark hopes expansion plans take off

Operators of the Lawrence County Airpark are applying for a Federal Aviation Administration grant to pay for a planned land acquisition project.

Doug Cade, director of operations for E. L. Robinson's Ironton engineering firm, told the Lawrence County Commission Thursday that airpark officials plan to purchase a 3.3-acre tract of land near the end of the runway at a cost of $60,000. It is the same piece of land on which a small plane crashed earlier this year, killing Proctorville area physician Michael Young, his daughter, Ginny Young and a family friend, Stan Lampe.

The land will be used to improve runway safety.

Cade said airpark officials are applying for $138,225 in federal monies and the Friends of the Lawrence County Airpark will contribute $7,275 in matching monies for the project, for a total project cost of $145,500.

"The rest of the money will be for surveys, assessments and negotiations on other pieces of land," Cade said.

The commission Thursday approved plans to spend $77,750 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) monies to repair damage done by the storm drain outfall near Franklin Street in Burlington.

Ironton-Lawrence County Community Action Agency Director of Community Development David Michael said the outfall is too short to reach the river and the water coming out of it is eroding nearby land, threatening houses in the area.

The plan is to extend the pipe to a manhole with a 38-foot vertical drop to the river, keeping flowing water away from the Burlington soil.