Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

Bids to expand Santa Fe Regional Airport cause sticker shock

Copyright © 2021 Albuquerque Journal

The future of the planned expansion of Santa Fe Regional Airport is in the balance as bids for the project turned out to be $ 10 million higher than expected.

Regina Wheeler, director of public works for the city of Santa Fe, said bids received on Sept. 23 totaled approximately $ 20 million for the amount of work, which was estimated to be closer to $ 10 million. The city received $ 10.5 million from lawmakers and also planned to provide some funding, but didn’t expect such a huge shortage.

Wheeler said the city is now determining the best way to move forward in accordance with procurement laws and is consulting its legal team. She said a decision should be made by next week, after which it will be submitted to the city council for approval.

Councilor Chris Rivera, who sits on the city’s airport’s advisory board, said the higher-than-expected costs could be attributed to rising construction costs due to the pandemic. He also acknowledged that next steps are currently being discussed, but stressed the need to move quickly with expansion.

Wheeler said the airport was incredibly valuable to northern New Mexico; Once the extension is approved, it will take approximately 18 months to complete.

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