Gov. Justice announces new facility, safety system at Yeager Airport

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CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS) — Governor Jim Justice announced his intent to fund the construction of a new United States Customs building at Yeager Airport.

The Governor requested $2 million from the West Virginia Infrastructure Jobs Development Council to help fund the construction. Governor Justice said he wants to make the state capital an international gateway.

“We want to make the airport here in our capital an international gateway,” Gov. Justice said. “Our airport here needs to be a showcase; a showcase for not only just our state, but for the world.”

The funding request must go before the IJDC, which manages and facilitates funding for infrastructure and other projects. Governor Justice said the customs building would allow Yeager Airport to facilitate international travel among private or cargo aircrafts.

The announcement was made Friday, July 19, at an event celebrating the completion of a revitalized EMAS, or Engineered Material Arresting System, runway safety system. An EMAS system is a set of materials, including geofoam blocks and more, designed to stop aircrafts in as safe a manner as possible in the event they overshoot the runway.

The new EMAS was opened for use on Runway 5, which was destroyed in the collapse of a portion of the airport’s hillside in May 2015. Governor Justice helped secure the $3 million needed to complete the project.

Governor Justice also called for a distinctive welcome sign to be installed at Yeager Airport for travelers to see as they leave the airport.

“I want a sign that welcomes people to West Virginia that blows everybody away,” Gov. Justice said. “Landscaped, lit, the whole bit, because as soon as they got off that airplane, when they head down that hill, not only do they want to see good paving, but we need a sign.”

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