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Rapid City Regional Airport is upgrading

 The model of the future renovations at Rapid City Regional Airport. (KOTA TV)
The model of the future renovations at Rapid City Regional Airport. (KOTA TV) (KOTA)
Published: Jul. 31, 2019 at 5:58 PM CDT
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Rapid City Regional Airport is going to look a little different as a $4.56 million grant will bring in some upgrades.

Normally, the airport receives $2.2 million from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to help fund annual renovation costs. But some of the leftover funds from last year and some in the future year will cover the costs of reconstructing the center portion of the airline terminal.

The funds will also go to design projects for access roads and to a new snow removal equipment. For the first time, the airport will purchase a new snowplow with a broom attached to it to help clean runways more quickly during the winter.

The 31-year-old elevators and escalators will also be replaced.

The staircase, escalators and elevators will move to the entry lobby beside each other to make it easier for travelers to spot.

The old elevator shaft will also be replaced with a wider one made of glass.

The airport's Executive Director Patrick Dame said they are using glass to help with the aesthetics. it will allow travelers to enjoy the beauty of the Black Hills from every angle.

Dame said he wishes the public will be patient as the airport will be in transition mode for several months.

"My biggest request to the public is to be patient with us. There's going to be a mess. We're hoping to have some signs up. We've got phasing into the project. But when you come to the terminal come with the expectation that things are going to look a little different," Dame said.

The construction is expected to start in mid-September and will continue till early June 2020.