Airport officials: Don't let the pipes freeze!

To Bert Mooney Airport officials:

There are a lot of Butte residents that would like to let you know that your plans to demolish the old airport terminal are repulsive. That building was completely built with local and federal taxpayer dollars and is a community asset. It presents a huge opportunity for the future growth of our airport as a commercial hub.

Indoor space at any municipal airport is highly sought after, whether it is rented by private vendors, used as a shipping center, or simply a storage facility. If you truly want to see more traffic at Bert Mooney, then you will make this space available for business.

Travelers want more options at Bert Mooney, and that building is your best opportunity to make those options available. Take a hint from the busiest airport in the state, Gallatin Field. One of their keys to success is their excellent habit of adding onto older buildings, rather than wasting crucial resources by destroying and rebuilding them.

Through massive growth, they have kept their 1950s- and 1970s-era terminals and other buildings intact and are utilizing them to the fullest. Gallatin Field is one proud example of true expansion. But your idea of using taxpayer dollars to tear down that valuable terminal, that was built by the citizenry of Butte, is not an idea of true expansion, but an idea of waste and ruin.

An action of this nature would be a sure sign of gross mismanagement at Bert Mooney, and would ruin your credibility in the eyes of many. If you rip that building down, I’m not the only one who would go out of my way to avoid flying out of an airport whose management would do something so foolish, wasteful, and short-sighted.

The Airport Authority Board meets Wednesday, March 7, at noon at the new terminal.

— Cameron Moylan, Butte