The U.S. Department of Transportation announced Wednesday, July 31, that it will award $478 million in airport infrastructure grants to 232 airports in 43 states and Puerto Rico.
The award is the fourth allotment of grants issued under the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Airport Improvement Program, which is funded by taxes on passenger tickets and cargo waybills. All told, U.S. airports have received $3.18 billion in federal funding during fiscal year 2019, which ends on September 30.
Airports receive a certain amount of entitlement funding from the program each year based on activity levels and project needs. If an airport’s capital project needs exceed its available entitlement funds, the FAA can supplement its entitlements with discretionary funding.
Projects to be funded include runway reconstruction and rehabilitation, construction of firefighting facilities, and the maintenance of taxiways, aprons and terminals. “The construction and equipment supported by this funding increase the airports’ safety, emergency response capabilities and capacity, and could support further economic growth and development within each airport’s region,” DOT said in a statement.
U.S. airport infrastructure consists of 3,332 airports and 5,000 paved runways.