BOISE, Idaho — The U.S. Department of Transportation has allocated $3 billion to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) to improve airport infrastructure across the country.
In the most recent allotment of $477 million, the FAA approved Boise Airport's 2019 projects - which will focus on widening runway taxi lanes and the apron, where airplanes park when they are not in use.
"Every year, the Boise Airport submits a number of projects to the FAA to review for federal funding," Boise Airport spokesman Sean Briggs said.
This year's grant of $5.3 million is considerably more than last year's $4.1 million. According to Briggs, the amount the FAA awards is based on the size of the airport, as well as the amount of people purchasing flights, which has been on a steady incline.
"Our [number of] total passengers has been increasing year after year," Briggs said. "We had a record year in 2018 with almost 4 million passengers flying out of the Boise Airport."
The grant money is typically used for various maintenance and upkeep projects.
"It is maintenance - just like anyone would maintain their home," Briggs said. "We have to maintain the airport and that includes our airfield, our runways, taxi lanes and taxi ways."
While the $5.3 million is allocated towards improving the airfield, Briggs says you can expect to see more improvements over the next five years, focusing on additional parking garages and upgrading concourses.