September 12, 2023 at 5:55 a.m.

Rhinelander airport to receive $7M for upgrades


By River News Staff

The Rhinelander-Oneida County Airport is one of three Wisconsin airports set to receive new grant funding from the federal government to improve safety, expand capacity and update aging infrastructure.

The airport is due to receive $7,074,515 to upgrade lighting and rehabilitate runways and taxiways, Sen. Tammy Baldwin’s office announced Thursday afternoon.

“Funding to support these grants comes from the Baldwin-backed annual government funding bill for Fiscal Year 2023, and has been awarded to Appleton International, Dane County Regional, and Rhinelander-Oneida County airports, as well as the Wisconsin State Block Grant Program,” the senator’s office explained in a press release announcing the grants. 

“Wisconsin’s airports employ hundreds of workers, connecting travelers from across the world to our great state and supporting our Made in Wisconsin economy,” said Senator Baldwin. 

“But, outdated infrastructure can create delays and put passengers’ wellbeing at risk,” Baldwin continued. “That’s why I am proud to help deliver federal funding that will upgrade aging infrastructure, increase safety, and ensure our airports can welcome new passengers for years to come. When we invest in our airports, we are investing in the people who rely on these facilities to do business, visit loved ones, and participate fully in our economy.” 

 The funding for these projects comes from the Federal Aviation Administration’s Airport Improvement Program (AIP), which provides grants for the planning and development of public-use airports and improvements related to enhancing airport safety, capacity, security, and environmental concerns. 

The Dane County Regional Airport and Appleton International Airport projects are described as follows:

• Appleton International will receive $8,129,416 to expand a terminal building. 

• Dane County Regional/Truax Field will receive $6,605,910 to reconstruct a taxiway. 

The Wisconsin State Block Grant Program was awarded $1,768,500 to acquire land for approaches and improve safety.

 “On behalf of the Rhinelander-Oneida County Airport Commission and its regional sponsors, we extend our gratitude to our congressional delegation for their continued support of our facility. Funding for this comprehensive project will go toward supplanting much of our airport’s 45-year-old physical infrastructure,” said Matthew J. Leitner, Airport Director at Rhinelander-Oneida County Airport. “This will enhance our airport’s operational capabilities and further increase the economic contribution it makes to our region, which is already over $40,000,000 annually.”


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