Airport Authority to consider Jet Ranch

A proposal for a large aircraft hangar project to be built at the Carson City Airport is again before the airport board, though this time focus is on obtaining a final recommendation about the project.

The airplane storage building would sit near the center of Carson City Airport on roughly 3.3 acres. The architectural firm doing the work for owner Tom Gonzales is Reno-based Licata Hansen. Construction is expected to begin early next year.

One Ash Canyon resident doesn't want to see any additions to the airport - especially more hangars - because of the noise some pilots already make as they fly over his neighborhood. More aircraft would only make the situation worse, said Scott Krieger.

"On a nice day, like last Saturday, there was one plane after another flying over. I can't enjoy going outside and enjoy my yard anymore," Krieger said. Some of the pilots are "skylarking Walter Mittys imagining themselves as World War II flying aces, except they're circling over Carson City."

The main Jet Ranch building would be roughly 32,000 square feet and nearly 60 feet high. Office and administrative space would take up about 3,200 square feet of the total. There would be 12 other hangars built: five of them within 18,750 square feet of space and another seven contained in 26,350 square feet, according to the city.

If airport authority members give final approval to the project - they approved it conceptually in January - the next stop for the Jet Ranch is the Planning Commission, where members are scheduled to consider it during their March 28 meeting. The Board of Supervisors would weigh in on it only if someone appeals the commission decision.

Members of the Carson City Airport Authority will consider several other issues during their meeting at 6 tonight, among them flight patterns.

Supervisor Richard Staub, who also serves on the airport board, said there is a proposal to have members of the Naval Sea Cadet Corps watch aircraft from the end of the runway to see whether they are traveling at the appropriate height, currently 800 feet above ground level, and take down tail numbers of the offenders.

Those pilots flying low may face sanctions - if the authority approves another proposal being considered that might allow pilots caught repeatedly flying low to be evicted from the airport, Staub said.

A $25 million overhaul of the airport is planned during the next four years. Work would include realigning the main runway so the flight path is directed north, 100 yards farther away from homes on Apollo Drive, according to Neil Weaver, a member of the authority.

The money comes from a federal grant being paid to the city in phases.

Apollo Drive-area residents should expect decreases in the number of flyovers and amount of noise as a result of the airport improvements because of the runway realignment, Weaver said.

Also expected to be discussed is rising the height level from 800 feet above ground level to 1,000 feet above ground level.

Though aircraft noise has been a complaint, there have been safety concerns as well. Two plane crashes in the Apollo Drive area have happened in recent years. One in 2001 resulted in a man being injured; the other in 2006 caused property damage in the neighborhood.

• Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber or 882-2111, ext. 215.

If you go

WHAT: Carson City Airport Authority meeting

WHEN: 6 tonight

WHERE: Sierra Room, Carson City Community Center, 851 E. William St.


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