Thursday, January 14, 2016

Marfa Airport /TXDOT aviation, grant project meeting 4PM 1/12/2016 Marfa airport

Here are my notes on the meeting between local stakeholders and TXDOT, with additional reps from engineering firms regarding the runway lighting project and additional improvements to the Marfa Airport, Presidio County, TX.

Marfa Airport meeting with TXDOT representatives, 4:00 PM Marfa Airport 1/12/2016

Marfa project will be a federally funded project. Anticipating funding to come in June. Project construction likely to start in October 2016.

Final design meeting for review of Marfa airport improvements design.
Mostly electrical. Lighting replacement and wiring replacement.

Scope of project is runway edge lights, signage, wind come lamp, papis.
Limited budget at $800,000 with essentially no wiggle room due to state budgetary crisis.
Anticipating three good bids on this project.

Burt Compton asks which item would/could be trimmed back on. 
Reps say that they want to have all. 
Asks about signs.
Larger signs 60 feet off edge of taxiway. Decision made to accommodate gliders.

TXDOT Planning comments say that taxiway lights are not supported. Existing will be removed. 
No runway exit signs either. Reflectors on ground will signify taxiways.
Green centerline reflectors on taxiways.
Chase Snodgrass expresses concerns about future lack of taxiway lighting. 

Decision is made to keep taxiway lights on taxiway that intersects 13.
Two additional blue lights between white runway lights to signify taxiway. 

TXDOT Planning wants to keep new electrical vault in plans as last potential deduct from bids. Vault building is pre-cast concrete as specified. 

Add alternate one is LED upgrade from Quartz. Quartz in base bid.
15% approximate extra cost for LED. About $9000 upgrade.
Electrical costs can make up for this extra cost. 
AEP is aware of project upgrade coming. No issue there.
First add alternate will be LEDs
Chase advocates for LED, may make case to commissioners court if need be.
 Potential for LED lighting being made mandatory at some point in the future, however TXDOT still sees it as an upgrade.
Add alternate is also wind cones. Primary wind cone should be done if possible. 
Revision will be to make primary part of base bid, but being first deduct.
No supplemental wind cone lighting. Would be about $15,000 to add supplemental wind cones.
Size three guide signs are part of base bid. Deduct to size one if need be. 
TXDOT thinks signs are more important than vault, other things Chase thinks are more important.
Discussion regarding open cut instead of directional bore drilling beneath taxiways, runway. Open cut will be cheaper, can be done quickly. Repair concrete. Could depend on price of concrete. Directional drilling could be cheaper. Possible deduct item.
Airport would be mostly shut down for a few days if cuts are made.
Quartz vs LED papis (light array positioned next to runway-stands for precision approach path indicator). Quartz still generally used. Unsure of LED track record.
Will explore cost of LED option in bid process. 
Conversation about including baffles re papis.
Possible stub out for electric to add taxiway lights later added. Not a problem.

Instructions for contractor regarding staging areas for equipment, supplies.
Will be considered and added after Chase weighs in.

If vault is not included in base bid, then where do electrical controllers, regulators, controls, supplies go? 
Need a placeholder for the plan is the concrete vault does not work out. Chase once again talks about a cheaper metal building instead of the $65,000 concrete building. 
Questions about have it outdoors with a shade structure. Chase says that there would be time if there is no vault, to build a vault. TXDOT reps not happy about potential for overlapping contractor times, change orders, etc.
Vault would be located adjacent to the beacon tower. John McCrory asks. 
Chase still can't get his head around the high cost for a vault, would rather opt for a metal building at one tenth of the cost. Possible that county's match (10%) could be greater than cost of a cheaper building. TXDOT folks really want a concrete pad, regardless of wall construction.
Chase wants to research building a building to house electric outside of project.
TXDOT recommends putting electric back where it is now, in the hangar, if vault does not get included in project.
McCrory says that he is not too concerned with location of power is, as long as it does not impede anything or make a dangerous situation.
Beebe asks if there is a real difference between cinder block on a slab vs cast concrete  installation for vault.
TXDOT says that plans will be revised to see if possibly a small building can be built in place to save money.
Chase says we can possibly plan for this. 
Discussion all around.
Chase opposes the location of new equipment to be placed back in the hangar in which the old equipment is based presently. 
Plans will now give contractor options to build a building not pre-cast.
If not, equipment will go back into present hangar.

Fuel farm electric will not be affected by this project.

New rotating beacon installation: accidentally added in plans; not part of project scope.

None of lighting equipment specs are proprietary in final plans.

Conduit trench will be about 12 inches deep.

Jim White asks about solar runway lights. TXDOT says solar powered runway lights are not approved. White says they are FAA approved. He uses them at his own airstrips.
White says they have a radio control center, and he knows it's too late in the game to start on this but was asking anyway. Much cheaper, individually replaced, no conduit. 
TXDOT has never dealt with them, have no information.

Questions to whether signs have to be lighted. Unsure. Engineer says it would be a lot cheaper, but TXDOT rep says he thinks they would need to be lighted. 
McCrory asks Burt Compton if he has any additional thoughts regarding signs. Burt says that he is satisfied, TXDOT is clear on what he needs to continue operating the glider business, which is the only commercial operator based out of Marfa airport.

Bid proposal has 70 calendar days. Talk of dropping that to 60 days. 

Bid includes removal of old electrical work, wiring. Contractor would own salvage material. Any objections from County? Chase says no, not needed, could improve bid numbers. 

Solar lights could be a good option for taxiway lights down the line. Mentioned by engineer...
Chase is interested.
Jim White is interested as to whether Chase is satisfied with all this. Chase says yes. Jim states that commissioners court is very interested in his opinion, since they rely on his knowledge and guidance. Discussion about federal specs, costs, etc.

Jim White requests a summary of everything discussed today. TXDOT says yes, they can do that.
Final documents should be ready by Feb. Chase would like a synopsis of changes made during today's discussion and anytime recently.
Funding/commission funding in June, possibly July. Put out for bid approx two months following that, then construction starts two months following that. 
Bill for County's share of ten percent will come around May/June.

Burt Compton would like a final diagram of sign locations. 
Plans on hand, shown to Burt. Burt verifies. Chase has an electronic copy he can send as well. 
Ryan Hindman, TXDOT
Lecette Ferguson, electrical engineer, 
Larry Caldwell, Klotz Associates

Chase will be rep in charge of monitoring construction.
Resident Project Representative

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