2020 Year In Review | www.flysanmarcos.com
There are several words that could be used to describe the year 2020 and as we're sure you would agree, most of them are not suitable for publication.

However, when we focus on the airport, we're apt to have more a positive take.

This year we celebrated our 10-year anniversary managing San Marcos Regional on behalf of the City. Negotiating our contract extension provided an opportunity for us to reflect on all the things we've achieved over the past decade and we have a lot to be proud of. Feel free to check out the packet we provided to Council, or for our more visual friends, the video below highlights our top 10 accomplishments.
This time last year we had a sizable laundry list of items we planned to tackle in 2020 but COVID had other plans. Like everyone else, we had to adapt and focus on the health and safety of our users, tenants, and our families.

Go Wheels Up was cancelled, our children were on the world's longest Spring Break, and we had to figure out how to get our cameras working to attend a million Zoom meetings. But we powered through it and we're grateful to the City for their support and for our tenants who took everything in stride.

Below is a recap of what we were able to get done despite the challenges. The list may be shorter than what we're used to but we're excited to see what 2021 has to bring.

Thank you to the City of San Marcos and all our Customers for continuing to entrust Texas Aviation Partners with the region's greatest asset.

In the month of April, we saw a steep decline in aircraft takeoffs and landings and like most people in the aviation industry, we assumed this trend would continue through the rest of the year. But while airports with scheduled commercial service are still dealing with lower than normal counts, we began experiencing record-breaking numbers in June and they haven't stopped. August was our best month with 3,836 more takeoffs and landings compared to August 2019. All told, we saw over 14,000 more operations in 2020 compared to 2019.

We are happy to report that after two years of diligent research and planning, our consultant Garver has delivered the final version of our updated Airport Master Plan. The plan, which hasn't been updated since 2001, considers current industry dynamics and looks at the long-term airport use, anticipated projects, and projected funding needs over the next 10 years. TxDOT and FAA are currently reviewing the Airport Layout Diagram and a summary of the plan will be presented to Council during a work session in February.

This year, after lobbying incredibly hard for funding, we finally received word from TxDOT that the reconstruction of two most used taxiways will be funded via FAA discretionary funding in 2022 (Charlie) and 2023 (Alpha). More information on exact timing will be available closer to the end of FY 2022. In the meantime, we will continue to push for funding through stimulus programs approved by Congress.
FM 110

For the past several years, we've worked closely with County officials to plan the layout and right-of-way acquisition of airport property for FM 110 - a limited access I-35 bypass route that begins near the Outlets and rejoins I-35 at Yarrington to the north. This year we received the official approval of the release of airport property from TxDOT and the FAA. Construction on the section near the airport should begin toward the end of this year and we're now working with the Department of Labor to secure an additional access drive creating a second airport entrance.

A large portion of our time this year was spent working with local, state, and federal officials to clarify restrictions on operations as we navigated the ever-changing COVID waters. Closing the airport was never an option so ensuring that everyone was focusing on the safety of their customers and employees was paramount. We're pleased to share that we did not have any major COVID outbreaks associated with our commercial operators despite the increased use of the airfield.

We welcomed two new commercial operators to the airport this year. The first - Survey and Mapping, LLC (SAM) - leased a 6,100 square foot hangar for aerial mapping equipped aircraft storage and the storage and maintenance of its Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) heavy-lift helicopters. More recently, Council approved an agreement with Air Carriage Over Texas for the use of the airport management parking lot for the launch of hot air balloons.

As part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic (CARES) Act approved by Congress, San Marcos Regional was awarded $157,000. The funds, administered through the Federal Aviation Administration, are meant to support continuing airport operations in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In August 2019, construction began on an 8,050 square foot corporate hangar in the Kilo Development Area near the airport entrance. The project was funded via an $881,667 Federal Aviation Administration Grant. In September 2020, after investing over $200,000 in tenant finish out improvements, McCoy Building Supply began operating their fleet from the hangar and associated office space. McCoy's corporate flight department has been based at the airport since 1979.
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