New Florida Airport Cleared for Takeoff

 - November 15, 2006, 6:43 AM

A proposed new airport in Panama City, Fla., has cleared a final hurdle. In a record of decision signed on September 16, the FAA said the proposed new airport meets all applicable environmental and safety guidelines. The plan for the new airport calls for two runways–one 8,400 feet long and another 5,000 feet long–on 4,000 acres 20 miles northwest of Panama City donated by the St. Joe Company. St. Joe is also donating land for a conservation easement for possible wetland and habitat mitigation. Existing Panama City FBOs Precision AvJet and SheltAir Aviation Services will build facilities at the new airport, with financial assistance from the airport authority. The longer runway at the new airport should bring in more traffic, said SheltAir COO Ed Zwirn, and SheltAir’s existing 33-year lease will transfer to the new airport when it opens in 2009.