Airport a vital asset for Imperial
For the last couple of years, the Imperial Airport Authority and the Imperial City Council have been going back and forth about the drainage pit on the southwest corner of the airport property.
What seems to be at issue is the safety factor of the sidewalls of the pit. To hold more drainage water, the city deepened the original retention pond to the point that it’s now more of a pit.
The sidewalls of the pit are nearly straight up, causing a safety concern. If a sidewall were to give away when someone was walking or playing near it and the pit was holding water, like it is now, escaping would not be an easy feat.
Granted, that possibility is remote but it’s still plausible that could happen.
But this column is not about which entity is right or which one should pay to grade the sides to a safe angle. It’s about the vital role our airport plays for Imperial and the region.
Other communities would love to have the quality of airport that we have in Imperial.
For starters, the runway was extended to 5,000 feet which is enough to land small jets, but more importantly Flight for Life planes.
Not only was the runway extended but it was replaced with concrete several years ago, insuring a long life for the facility.
The airport has a 24-hour automated weather observation system and a GPS approach system for landing and taking off in inclement weather.
A new terminal building replaced a terminal facility that had far outlived its purpose.
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