The disappointment was obvious Tuesday night among area pilots, after they heard the Port of Camas-Washougal Commission vote 3-0 to not apply for $10 million from the Federal Aviation Administration to pay for improvements at Grove Field Airport.
After the commissioners’ meeting ended, the pilots gathered in the front lobby of the port office building and scheduled an impromptu meeting of their own at the Adams Street Bar and Grill, in downtown Camas.
“This is a great disappointment,” Dick Martin, a pilot for 43 years, said regarding the commission’s decision to not have Grove Field become an FAA-obligated airport. “It is a nice, quiet airport, but it needs improvement. The runway is relatively narrow.
“If they had a more attractive airport, it could attract maintenance and flight schools,” he added.
Correcting the airport’s design standard deficiencies would involve widening the runway to 60 feet, lengthening the runway to 3,070 feet, clearing obstructions within the airport’s runway safety area and shifting the runway to meet center line/taxiway separation standards. Relocating Delp Road would involve digging a tunnel.