The Booneville Airport will soon be home to a new five bay hangar.

Work has started, slowly, on the project to add the five hanger spots and an accompanying asphalt ramp.

The five hangar bay is the second to be added at the airport bringing the total available hangars at the airport to 20. For each of the new hangars the airport has a written commitment to rent, according to Booneville Airport Commission chairman Mike Wyrick.

An additional single hangar is owned by the city and leased to Tucker Aviation Services, Inc.

The majority of funding for the project is through two State Airport Improvement Grants, which were approved by the Arkansas Department of Aeronautics in May, Wyick said.

The first grant is for $237,760 to cover the construction of the hanger itself. The second grant, for $50,787 is for the asphalt ramp.

Wyrick noted the state money has no effect on general revenues because all money is generated by aviation use. To date the Booneville Airport has received over $1 million in grant funding for airport projects through the Department, Wyrick said.

The first SAIG grant covers 80 percent of the estimated $297,200 cost of constructing the bays and related engineering fees. The second grant covers 90 percent of the estimated $56,430 price tag of the asphalt skirting for the bay.

That leaves about $65,000 to be paid locally. Wyrick said that money will come from fuel sales at the airport and the airports participation in a city one percent sales and use tax. The airport receives 7 percent of the take from the tax.

However, because grant proceeds are extended on a project refund basis rather than up front, the airport commission was granted permission in May by the Booneville City Council to open a $300,000 line of credit at First Western Bank.

Wyrick said grant proceeds are typically extended at the halfway point and at project completion.