New Mexican airport pursues cargo with $9m renovation plan 

New Mexico’s Dona Ana County International Jetport (FAA: DNA) has joined the ranks of small airports aiming to attract cargo carriers to their tarmac. The New Mexican airport recently announced it will implement US$9 million in renovations on its runway to support the effort. 

Dona Ana Airport’s plans to use the $9 million to upgrade the weight capacity of its existing runway from 20,000 pounds to 94,000 pounds capacity. Half of the funds will come from the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the other half from the New Mexico legislature capital appropriations of funds. The airport has already begun converting its parallel taxiway to be used as a temporary runway during the renovation process. Dona Ana Airport anticipates it will break ground on the project on Oct. 21, 2019 and aims to complete the project sometime around June 1, 2020. 

Following completion of this project, Dona Ana Airport also said it is exploring the construction of a crosswind runway that would be 12,000 feet long and 150 feet wide with instrument approaches at both ends and the ability to support 757 aircraft. 

Given the airport’s location adjacent to the Santa Theresa Industrial Park and near the Santa Theresa border crossings to New Mexico, Dona Ana Airport manager Bill Provance told Air Cargo World that some of the warehouses in the industrial park are “very, very interested in our obtaining air cargo capability.”  

The airport does not currently host the operations of any cargo carriers but responded to this local interest by integrating plans to develop cargo operations into its master plan last year. Further efforts to attract cargo carriers to the airport are yet to be determined as the airport first seeks to complete its infrastructure upgrades. 

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