The plan to remove the Utica Avenue towers has been ongoing for several years as residents raised concerns of viewsheds in the hamlet of Loudonville, with a 135-foot water tower high above the tree line. The airport and Authority agreed that a tree level tower was feasible. Over the course of last year, environmental assessments were conducted on that plan, and both the town and the Authority agreed to go with the tree level tower.
In the late 1990s the Federal Aviation Administration listed the existing Utica Avenue towers as an obstruction to the approach of the airport's runway 28. The runway runs from east to west.
The administration urged the authority to begin negotiations with the town to take them down. That began nearly three years ago. At no time did the FAA place a time line on the removal. However, the authority is pleased that the project is taking its final approach to ground breaking.
"We are moving ahead with the project," said Airport Authority spokesman Doug Meyers. "We are moving in a direction, and it's a good direction.""