The future of the Kalispell City Airport is once again front and center for the Kalispell City Council and several options have been put on the table.
According to Kalispell City Planner Tom Jentz, the city does not have the luxury of doing nothing as maintenance must be performed at the airport including fixing the current runway.
Jentz tells us that there are three, or technically four options to try and deal with the issue, but one of those was already turned down by voters opposed to any upgrading at the facility back in 2013.
Previously, council had worked to secure FAA funding to make the upgrades to the public, but groups like “Quiet Skies” managed to persuade the public to vote against the funding.
Jentz detailed the options for us on Wednesday.
The first option before the city would be to fund maintenance by using Kalispell’s general fund which would cost the city around $1 million for the first five years alone.
The second option would be to re-open discussions with the Federal Aviation Administration to complete necessary maintenance, however this is also that route that was tried unsuccessfully in 2013.
The third possible option would be to see if there is any interest from either public or private entities to take the airport off of the city’s hands, though none have been identified as of yet.
And the last option would be simply closing the doors and gates and permanently shutting down the Kalispell Airport in favor of redeveloping the land for another purpose.