USDA hangar to cost $208K at SARA

Published 12:00 am Thursday, May 25, 2017

The South Alabama Regional Airport Authority OK’d a $208,000 project to build a hangar to house a H120 helicopter for the United States Department of Agriculture.

The aircraft is brand new from Airbus and will be maintained by Vector Aerospace.

SARA Executive Director Jed Blackwell said the helicopter will be ready on Aug. 1.

Though the deadline is tight, airport officials hope to also have the hangar complete by Aug. 1.

In April, they rejected the bids for the project, citing they were too high.

This month, they received four bids for the hangar portion. Curry Construction located in Andalusia was the low bidder at $149,985.

They received five bids for the site work and Bullard Excavating was the low bidder at $20,000.

The remaining $38,015 of the project is for engineering fees.

Blackwell said that that the airport authority has finalized the loan with Covington Electric Cooperative and is paying the project’s bills.

Bullard Excavating is expected to begin work on Thursday or Friday.

Curry Construction has ordered the building, which is expected to be on site in six weeks, and will take about 20 days to complete.

The USDA has agreed to pay the $1,000 note for five years, Blackwell said.

Additionally he said that Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood did not charge SARA for rebidding the project.

Engineer Michelle Conway said that Curry is expected to start Monday.

“Even with the weather and the building taking six weeks, I expect to keep on track with the Aug. 1 deadline,” she said. “The building should be here the week of July 4.”

The hangar will be built in the area of the Pate and Bullard hangars.