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Hartsfield-Jackson gets $13.97 million stimulus grant

By Maria José Subiria

msubiria@news-daily.com

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport will receive $13.97 million in federal stimulus money to construct an apron as part of the Maynard H. Jackson, Jr., International Terminal project, airport and federal transportation officials said this week.

The U.S. Department of Transportation said the money, from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, would be provided through the Federal Aviation Administration.

"As part of the International Terminal, the FAA has given a grant ... towards the airport apron," said John Kennedy, senior public relations manager for the Department of Aviation at Hartsfield-Jackson.

According to Kennedy, the Maynard H. Jackson, Jr., International Terminal began construction last summer, and has a projected construction cost of $1.35 billion.

"The Recovery Act was put in place quickly to rescue the economy from the worst recession since the Great Depression, and rebuild it for a stronger future," U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a statement. "Rebuilding the nation's infrastructure is a key part of that prescription for strength. It creates jobs today, and builds a better, more sustainable economy moving forward."

Through the Recovery Act, the U.S. Department of Transportation will provide $48.1 billion for highway, road, transit, bridge and airport construction and repairs, federal transportation officials said. The FAA received a total of $1.1 billion from the stimulus package to provide qualified airports in the U.S. with discretionary grants for eligible projects that address safety and security, infrastructure, capacity, and environmental-impact mitigation.

"We work with Atlanta on a regular basis, being such an important airport," said Hank Price, a spokesperson for the FAA. "In regards to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 that was passed, we were able to get the money out there, more rapidly, than with our regular grant program called the Airport Improvement Program."

"Through the Recovery Act, we are creating jobs in Atlanta and across the country while investing in the long-term safety and economic vitality of our airports," LaHood said.

Approximately 3,400 airports, designated as part of the national airport system, are eligible to receive stimulus funding, U.S. Transportation officials said.

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On the net:

American Recovery

and Reinvestment Act:

www.recovery.gov

Hartsfield-Jackson

Atlanta International Airport: www.atlanta-airport.com