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Smith Reynolds Airport Control Tower May Close

5:47 PM, Mar 6, 2013   |    comments
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Winston-Salem, NC -- The air traffic control tower at one of the Triad's airports may be closing.

Wednesday, Airport Director Mark Davidson told WFMY News 2 he was notified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) that Smith Reynolds Airport tower was on the list to be closed.

According to Davidson, the letter said the tower is scheduled to cease operations on April 7.

Davidson said they have until March 13 to appeal the closure and he plans to file that appeal. The FAA said it would finalize its list on March 18.

Smith Reynolds Airport is far from being unused. Davidson said they average about 43,000 flights a year, which averages out to about 120 per day. Those flights include planes coming in for maintenance, corporate flights and recreation.

The annual Air Show at Smith Reynolds will not be affected if the tower is closed. Davidson said an 'air boss' will come in and work on site during that time.

According to the FAA, it is planning to reduce its expenditures by approximately $600 million for the remainder of the 2013 Fiscal Year. This is part of the federal sequestration President Obama signed into law.

They are considering furloughing the vast majority of the 47,000 employees for approximately one day per pay period. Additional changes include closing more than 100 air traffic control facilities, eliminating the overnight shift at over 60 facilities and reducing preventive maintenance and support for all air traffic control equipment.

Stay with digtriad.com for updates.

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