Work to add nearly 3,100 linear feet of new Taxiway Lima pavement and a new Taxiway Bridge over Crooked Creek is underway at MidAmerica St. Louis Airport (BLV). The $37.7 million project will provide airfield access to a future aviation business park on the south side of MidAmerica St. Louis Airport, where the new Boeing Production Facility already under construction will be the first tenant. The project will also include drainage improvements, a new perimeter security fence, the extension of the existing perimeter road and improvements to the electrical and access control.
Begun in April 2022, the project is funded through grants issued by the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) and Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO). The work is set to finish by mid-2023 and will ultimately serve to connect the airport to the Boeing Production Facility and other new developments surrounding it.
The new Boeing facility is set to be completed in 2024 and will consist of multiple buildings within a 34-acre campus where Boeing’s new unmanned aircraft, the MQ-25, will be assembled. The MQ-25 will use the taxiway to access the MidAmerica St. Louis Airport runway for flight testing and ultimate delivery to the US Navy.
“We expect the new Boeing facility will attract additional aerospace industry companies to this new campus, including those in the airlines, engineering, and technology sectors, and the Taxiway Lima and Taxiway Bridge project will serve them all,” said St. Clair County Chairman Mark Kern. “The investments underway will provide hundreds of high paying jobs to St. Clair County and the other surrounding communities in southern Illinois.”
The Taxiway Lima project is being completed by Plocher Construction Company of Highland, Illinois. Springfield, IL-based Crawford, Murphy & Tilly handled the design work and will be providing construction inspection services.
“The new Lima Taxiway and bridge paves the way for continued expansion here at MidAmerica St. Louis Airport, and this project will help to ensure that Boeing and any other new developments south of the airport have the runway access they need,” said Bryan Johnson, director of MidAmerica St. Louis Airport. “When paired with the increases we’ve been seeing in passenger travel and the investment we are making in our new terminal, it is clear we’re proactively preparing for future growth.”
MidAmerica St. Louis Airport is located in Mascoutah, Illinois, in the eastern portion of the St. Louis metropolitan area. Passenger service to a dozen different destinations is offered by Allegiant. Major multimodal rail and inland port centers are located within 22 miles of the airport, which also enjoys easy access to five interstate highways via I-64. With parallel runways of 8,000 and 10,000 feet, the airport can handle simultaneous take-offs and landings in all conditions, minimizing delays. It has an annual capacity of 200,000 operations. Tenants include Boeing, which has an existing manufacturing facility at the airport and North Bay Produce, an international, grower-owned, year-round, fresh produce marketing and distribution cooperative headquartered in Traverse City, Mich. MidAmerica is a Joint Use Airport partnering with Scott AFB, the home to US Transportation Command, a multi service organization, and Air Mobility Command, the USAF’s component command for airlift. MidAmerica and the 375th Air Mobility Wing operate Scott AFB/MidAmerica St. Louis Airport.