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County begins work at Tara Field hangar

By Ed Brock

What Mother Nature put asunder, Chester Ganyon and his crew will put aright.

Chester Ganyon Contracting Demolition Division of Griffin, soon to be called Infinity Contracting, has been tapped to tear down the remains of the county's hangar at Tara Field Airport in Hampton and build a new structure in it's place.

The hangar was destroyed when a tornado "attacked" Tara Field and nearby Atlanta Motor Speedway on July 6, Clayton County Director of Transportation and Development Wayne Patterson told the county commission at their Tuesday meeting. Of the six companies that entered bids for the contract, Patterson said Ganyon's company "went out of the box" to bring in the low bid of $33,000.

Patterson said the company will basically recycle the metal remnants of the old hangar to keep the overall cost of the project down.

"No one else offered that," Patterson said. "Everyone else was going to charge us to remove it."

Ganyon said he has an arrangement with a steel company that provides the labor for removing the scrap metal so that they can then resell it.

"We don't make any money on it and we don't lose any money," Ganyon said.

The commission approved the funding of the demolition/reconstruction on an emergency basis to get the work done quickly. Patterson said having the loose metal scraps laying around next to the airport's pilots' lounge and office is a hazard.

Also, the county hopes to get the work done before the next NASCAR race at AMS, scheduled for the Oct. 28-30 weekend. Patterson said Ganyon hoped to be done by Oct. 20.

"They're working every day but Sunday," Patterson said.

Some of Ganyon's employees were at the airport this week finishing up some work on the control tower near the hangar.

"We had to gut the inside and put a new roof on it," said Brandon Wright, crew leader.

On Thursday, Wright and another worker were installing carpet on the floor and walls of the tiny room on top of the tower. They also plan to install shelving around the edge of the ceiling for the two-man Federal Aviation Administration crew that sometimes occupies the tower.

"It'll be a nice finishing touch," Wright said. "Everybody can use a little shelf."