What is an Airport Master Plan and why do we need one?

Heber Valley Airport’s master plan is designed to be a transparent and thoughtful effort to engage all stakeholders in planning for the future of the airport.  This means looking at whether any changes are needed to update the existing airport’s security, safety, and efficiency. It is not a mandate to grow the airport; rather, it provides the City with accurate and current data that will help the community make informed decisions about the future of this airport. Once the data is collected, the City can then make decisions on whether it needs to modernize the airport or if there are safety concerns that should be addressed.  To be clear, there is no requirement as the result of the Master Plan that the City expand the airport.  According to the FAA, “Airport Master plans are prepared to support the modernization or expansion of existing airports or the creation of a new airport. The master plan is the sponsor’s (Heber City) strategy for the development of the airport.” However, “in some cases the airport sponsor may decide that it is in the community’s best interest for the airport not to continue to grow to accommodate forecast activity.” (FAA Advisory Circular 150-5070-6B)

In the last few years Heber City Airport has seen an increase in small business jet traffic. The runway at Heber City Airport was designed for aircraft with much slower approach speeds than the aircraft that now use our airport. Because we have more than 500 operations (takeoffs or landings) by these business jets each year, the FAA has strongly encouraged Heber City to prepare an update of the airport master plan so the City can make a well-informed decision about the future airport development of the airport in light of its existing and predicted future traffic.

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1. What is an Airport Master Plan and why do we need one?
2. What is the process for the Airport Master Plan update?
3. What are Grant Assurances, and why do we have to abide by them?
4. If the City makes design criteria improvements at the airport, what prevents even larger aircraft, like passenger jets (commercial air service) form using the airport?
5. I heard that the airport is only used by people who live in Park City. What value does the airport provide the Heber community?
6. Can the City limit the number and type of aircraft using Heber Valley Airport?
7. Can we prevent larger planes from utilizing the Heber Valley Airport?
8. Can we just close the Heber Valley Airport?
9. Can we self-fund the Heber Valley Airport?
10. Can other counties help pay for the Heber Valley Airport?
11. I want to be involved. How can I provide feedback on the plan? How can I participate?