McAlester Regional Airport is growing.

Two new “T” hangars and one corporate hangar are being added to the airport. The additions should be complete in about two weeks, according to McAlester Regional Airport Manager George “Butch” Mellor.

“The Airport Authority voted to build these hangars in 2002,” Mellor said. “The city made arrangements for the money to build them.”

Mellor said construction costs for the new hangars total approximately $350,000.

The money for the new hangars was secured through a 20 year loan from the First National Bank and Trust Co. The loan amount was $350,000, with an interest rate of 4.25 percent.

However, Mellor said airport revenue will pay off the loan “long before” the 20 years are up. This revenue is gained chiefly through the rental of the other hangars at the airport.

Hangar rental for a single engine airplane costs around $165 per month, while hangar rental for a twin engine averages $275 per month, according to Mellor. There are about 40 planes based in McAlester.

“Our revenue for the year on the other hangars is $63,000 to $65,000 per year,” Mellor said. “That’s how we’ll debt service (the loan).”

Mellor said the rent money “will more than pay for the hangars.”

“It’s like having 12 rent houses paid for and you want to buy one more,” Mellor said.

Mellor said the corporate hangar was built to help draw industry to McAlester. The building measures 80 feet by 100 feet, and is designed to house larger “corporate” aircrafts.

“When corporate America comes to our town they won’t be riding on a Greyhound bus,” Mellor said. “We need to lure corporate industry and be ready for them.”

Mellor hopes the hangar will help bring some corporate entities to McAlester.

“We’re trying to help get some industry in here to help our city,” Mellor said.

“When a company wants to come, you can’t say we’ll build you a hangar. You need it to already be there.”

Mellor said the two smaller “T” hangars were built simply to accommodate more pilots with smaller planes.

“We had a need for them,” Mellor said. “People wanted more hangars.”

Mellor said the new “T” hangars have already been rented.

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