Thompson Announces $29,500 Federal Grant for Bradford Regional Airport Study
WASHINGTON – U.S. Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson today announced a federal grant that will help the Bradford Regional Airport (BRA) develop a business strategy for a 13-acre site at the airport.
The Appalachian Regional Commission awarded $29,500 to the Bradford Regional Airport Authority to help with the strategic plan. Local sources will match $29,500 bringing the total project funding to $59,000.
“The Appalachian Regional Commission has been tasked by Congress to assist rural areas to increase economic development opportunities, and this study in conjunction with the Airport Authority will help identify the best tenants for the airport industrial park,” Rep. Thompson said. “Bradford Regional is an economic hub in McKean County and thanks to this federal and local partnership, we will be able to continue growing employment in McKean County.”
“For the past several years the Bradford Regional Airport has been working toward developing the airport campus with the goal of diversifying our revenue opportunities in order to increase future viability,” Airport Manager Alicia Dankesreiter said. “This funding will allow us to focus resources to developing specific sites and recruiting businesses. The Business Development and Recruitment Plan is a key piece in moving forward. Congressman Thompson’s continued support for the airport and specifically for this project is very much appreciated. We are encouraged that he shares our feelings on the vital need for economic development in our rural Pennsylvania communities.”
The site is located west and southwest of Runway 5 with access provided from State Route 59 (Mt. Alton Road).
ABOUT THE PROJECT
McKean County will consult a professional planning firm to work with the Bradford Regional Airport Authority to develop a specialized and targeted business recruitment strategy for a 13-acre site at the airport.
The study will be shared with potential developers and national site selectors to help the Airport Authority determine three companies that will be best suited to take advantage of the site.
The oil and gas, and timber industry, among others, have expressed an interest in the site since 2015. Existing tenants located at the Bradford Regional Airport include the National Guard and the Pennsylvania State Police – who recently commenced construction of a new state police barracks.
The Airport Authority said the added security of the state police makes the site ideal for the gas and oil industry, light manufacturing and other emerging industries in the state.