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Morris Municipal Airport adds new hangar

The new hangar at Morris Municipal Airport will be full the day it is ready to rent said Keith Davison, chair of the Airport Advisory Committee. The new hangar is expected to be completed in June. (Brooke Kern/Sun Tribune)

MORRIS – There will soon be more room for planes at the Morris Municipal Airport, thanks to the construction of a new hangar at the facility.

The new hangar is located east of the two long, green hangars at the airport. The new building is 95’ by 110’ which will allow larger planes to be stored there.  

Keith Davison is the chair of the Airport Advisory Committee. He is excited to see the progress on the new hangar.

“I don’t think most people realize how busy our airport is,” Davison said. “There are at least eight businesses that regularly fly in and out of our airport, and we have a waiting list for hangar space.”

Davison said that the airport seems quiet during the day because most of the business flights have left by the time most of us are just getting ready for work.  

The airport is staffed five days a week, another thing Davison says most folks may not realize.  Dorothy Schneider has been the airport manager for 29 years.  

Construction of the new hangar is expected to be completed in June, weather permitting.  Schneider said the strong winds over the past week have prevented the crew from working on the facility. Additionally, they need to wait for the ground to thaw completely before completing the concrete and bituminous installation. But she says the pilots are anxious and frequently ask when they’ll be able to use the new hangar.  

TKDA Engineering of St. Paul has done the engineering for the design and construction of the new hangar. The estimated cost is $700,000, but Davison says that much of the funding will come from the federal government.

According to City Manager Blaine Hill, the federal government will provide $609,000 and $14,000 will come from the state. The city’s share is $77,000, which will be recouped through rental fees for the new facility.   

Davison says the day the hangar is ready to rent, it will be full.He is hopeful a second hangar can be constructed soon as there is enough interest to fill another facility.

However, there are some setback restrictions on the property that make placement of another hangar challenging. Additionally, Davison says they are continuing to discuss a longer runway for the airport, but funding for that project is the biggest obstacle.