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A building boom will get underway at Charleston’s Yeager Airport next spring, when construction is scheduled to begin on a classroom building for Marshall University’s School of Aviation, a new U.S. Customs and Border Protection building and a new general aviation flight line building.

Other airport construction set to take place in 2020 includes the rehabilitation and reconfiguration of a taxiway in the general aviation area, to provide aircraft access for the MU flight school, and a reconfigured parking lot with 45 additional spaces and new lighting at the Capital Jet Center.

Members of Yeager Airport’s construction committee were briefed on the upcoming activity Thursday by engineers assigned to the projects.

Richard Holes, of L.R. Kimball & Associates, said current plans call for an 8,900-square-foot building for Marshall’s aviation school, scheduled to open in the fall of 2021 at a site between the general aviation area and the 130th Airlift Wing’s flight operations area. Construction is expected to begin next summer. An extension of Eagle Mountain Road was recently completed, to provide vehicle access to the MU site.

The construction committee voted to recommend that the airport’s governing board award $138,913 to Kimball to plan the rehabilitation and reconfiguration of the taxiway serving the MU site and Capital Jet Center.

The new flight school will initially make use of two aircraft, add another two or three in the first few years of operation and eventually have a fleet of 10 instructional aircraft, according to Nick Keller, Yeager’s executive director.

Plans call for the new Customs and Border Protection building to be located adjacent to the Capital Jet Center terminal building and share a common wall with the CJC’s new flight line operations building and garage.

The new Customs building will serve as a portal for international travelers arriving at the Charleston airport by private aircraft, and as an inspection site for auto parts and other imported goods arriving by air for use by area manufacturers. Last summer, $2 million was awarded to the airport through the state’s Infrastructure Development Fund to construct the building.

Meanwhile, design work is expected to begin next year for a $23.5 million rehabilitation project for Yeager’s runway. Construction is tentatively scheduled to begin on that project in early 2021.

Reach Rick Steelhammer at, 304-348-5169 or follow @rsteelhammer on Twitter.