Gainesville Regional Airport welcomes new GA tenant

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Florida’s Gainesville Regional Airport has welcomed  Consortia Aerospace Group (formerly Chippewa Aerospace Group) as a new general aviation (GA) tenant.

Headquartered in Conway, SC, the engineering service firm established its base at Gainesville on 16 November in the former Silver Airways/ Eclipse Aviation building, occupying a modern, 61,000 sq.ft. maintenance hangar and adjacent 8,300 sq.ft. hangar, which formerly belonged to Automated Flight Service Station (AFSS).

Since the departure of Silver Airways in 2015, Gainesville Airport officials has been actively searching for a comprehensive tenant for the facilities. Airport CEO, Allan Penksa, remarked, “As a leading engineering service firms in the aerospace industry, Consortia Aerospace Group is making an investment in our area that will not only bring jobs, but new opportunities in the vibrant aviation and aerospace research and development industry to our region.” This, he added, will be a “great economic benefit to both the surrounding community and to the airport.”

Meanwhile, Julie Myers, Consortia Aerospace CEO added: “The location and the assets in this community are an ideal location for us to continue to provide our services to a wide variety of domestic and foreign aerospace companies, commercial and business aviation companies and private aircraft owners.”

Gainesville Regional Airport unveils new terminal expansion

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Florida-based Gainesville Regional Airport (GNV) marked the opening of its newly upgraded terminal with a ribbon cutting ceremony at the end of July.

The 15,200 sq.ft. two-gate passenger terminal expansion and improvement project was completed less than two years after breaking ground.

Providing a variety of passenger amenities and services to accommodate increased passenger traffic and demand, the expanded terminal features additional restrooms, a new food and beverage area, a quiet reflection room and an outdoor pet relief area, while connectivity features in every passenger chair.

GNV’s CEO, Allan Penksa, expressed his gratitude to those involved in the new terminal by  saying they have been “instrumental in shaping the vision for this great community asset.” He also paid homage to the local construction teams for “working hard through all types of conditions,” to realise the almost $16 million project that is part of the airport’s master plan.

“This project has been years in the making and is an important milestone in our continuing efforts to provide high quality air service and passenger facilities to our region,” added Penksa. “The fact that all involved were able to do this so well and uninterrupted despite the challenges of a worldwide pandemic is simply amazing.”

Meanwhile, Gainesville Alachua County Regional Airport Authority (GACRAA) Chairwoman, Grace Horvath, said as the community comes out of the pandemic, passengers are truly responding to the airport’s enhanced service and GNV’s ‘Fly Easy’ experience. “Beyond the capacity improvements and ability to support new service, this project provides an even more beautiful front door to our region, one we can all be proud of,” she noted.

The airport’s terminal expansion project was paid for by a combination of state and federal grants, along with passenger facility charges collected by the airport’s carriers, Delta and American Airlines. The terminal expansion and boarding bridges are the second and third phases of terminal investment, with final phases including addition parking options, new outbound, baggage screening/ handling system and additional airline operations space to better accommodate existing and future carriers.