Voters like to know that the people they elected to local office are keeping an eye on everything local government uses taxpayer dollars to purchase and maintain. The Town of Addison’s largest land asset — 25 percent of the Town — is Addison Airport. You might just be wondering who’s watching our airport.
Not long ago we sat down with Addison Mayor Pro-Tempore Blake Clemens. We asked a few questions about where the airport fits into the town’s overall business strategy, as well as how local officials feel about operating one of THE busiest business aviation airports in Texas and the region.
Not shy with his opinions, Blake offered listeners, some who just me be airport managers themselves, a few insights that might be useful in running other airports.
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Running an airport is pretty easy … as long as nothing ever changes of course.
But today, an airport is a product of its environment, both locally and nationally, but also economically and politically … essentially everything and anything that’s happening both on and off the airport itself. Aircraft capabilities and requirements are constantly changing. The type of services that might have been valuable a few decades ago such as maintenance on radial engines or fabric covered airplanes is long gone and with them the need for the buildings those businesses once used. Even T-hangar requirements evolve now to a point where the options for electricity and running water are often expected.
The Town of Addison has spent much of the last year thinking about how the airport fits into the community. They’ve looked at how it functioned a few years ago and how it might need to function in the future. The recent Solicitation for Proposals for the property on Jimmy Doolittle Drive is just the tip of the iceberg however. Because updating an airport is expensive in both time and resources, no airport sponsor ( the Town of Addison) wants to make a mistake. Hence, the Town’s recent efforts to develop a strategic plan as a guiding document for the Airport Director and their team about what direction – or directions – they can expect the airport to move.
Addison Airport Radio’s Pete Combs spent some time recently with Town Mayor Pro Tempore Blake Clemens and City Council member Neil Resnick about the development of the airport’s strategic plan. Click the link below to listen to his report: