Columbia Metropolitan Airport passengers will soon notice more construction on site as the next phase of the new Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting (ARFF) facility gets underway.
While the project itself kicked off with Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin, Representative Joe Neal of Richland County and Representative Kenny Bingham of Lexington County partaking in a ground breaking ceremony alongside Richland-Lexington Airport Commission Chair, David Jordan, and
Airport Director, Dan Mann, The first phase of the project involved changes to the apron to ensure access from the new facility to the runways. With that part near completion, the building itself will begin to go up.
The state-of-the-art facility is engineered to be environmentally friendly with a number of certified green elements that meet GreenSpec, Energy Star and International Energy Conservation Code requirements.
The building’s environmentally-friendly features include white roofing and masonry construction to reduce cooling costs, Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) technology in the building’s HVAC system, and LED Lighting throughout the building.
The new building comes as a much needed upgrade to a facility that was first constructed in 1974 and added on to in 1992. Since that time, FAA standards have been updated and the airport’s fire and police departments have combined to become a single 24 hour public safety department with both male and female officers. These and other changes required a facility to accommodate the airport’s safety and personnel needs of today and beyond.
The 19,000 square foot building is expected to be completed by September 2015. The total project cost is estimated at $5.8m which includes the construction of the building and associated utilities, a dedicated airfield response connector road, demolition of the existing station, and construction of parking facilities. A DBE goal of 7.2% has been set for the project which equates to $425,000. In total, over 350 jobs from 47 different contractors are expected to directly result from this project.