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26-Jul-2011 9:37 AM

FAA calls halt to critical aviation projects

US Federal Aviation Administration announced (25-Jul-2011) contractors have been told to stop work on critical airport modernisation projects around the US, after Congress failed to pass legislation on Friday giving the FAA the authority necessary for work to continue. Nearly 4000 FAA personnel, many needed to oversee various aspects of these projects, were furloughed on Saturday. Dozens of “stop work orders” have been issued for major projects designed to build and modernise control towers and other aviation infrastructure, totalling around USD2.5 billion in contracts.

Stop work orders include include:

  • Las Vegas McCarran International Airport: USD43 million project to build a new air traffic control tower;
  • Palm Springs International Airport: USD24.5 million project to build a new air traffic control tower;
  • Oakland International Airport: USD31 million project to build a new air traffic control tower;
  • Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport: USD18 million project to build a new air traffic control tower;
  • Kalamazoo Battle Creek International Airport: USD14 million project to build a new air traffic control;
  • Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport: USD12 million project to build a new air traffic control tower;
  • New York LaGuardia Airport: USD6 million project to demolish the old air traffic control tower;
  • Jacobs Engineering: Stop work orders for USD370 million in contracts. The company is contracted to do all the architect, design, engineering and planning services for existing and future air traffic facilities. 

Before last Friday, the FAA was also prepared to award contracts for new air traffic control towers in Cleveland, Ohio and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, but was forced to suspend that process because the agency was no longer authorised to access the Airport and Airway Trust Fund. [more]