Applauded For Efforts To Keep Land Around APA Clear Of
AOPA President Phil Boyer was
presented with a special award on behalf of Centennial Airport, and
Colorado pilots, during a Pilot Town Meeting in Denver last week.
The award -- a bust of Captain Elrey Jeppesen -- is inscribed, "In
grateful appreciation for your many years of dedicated support on
behalf of general aviation."
"Through Phil’s leadership, AOPA has accomplished so much
for GA at the local, state, and national levels," said APA Director
Robert Olislagers. "He’s done an amazing job."
As one example of Boyer's contributions, Olislagers cited
efforts to stop the construction of 1,600 homes right off the end
of the runway. Aided by AOPA, those efforts succeeded... and now,
the airport and county have purchased development rights and some
acreage in the area, ensuring compatible land use and protecting
the airport environment.
"We couldn’t have done it without AOPA," he said.
Olislagers told members the secret of the airport's success is
balancing the needs of the airport and the community, and to keep
the two working together.
He has stressed a need to lure non-aviation development to the
land surrounding the airport. As an example, the north approach to
the airport is protected by a golf course and other sports
developments; some airport property is currently being used for a
"We’re essentially banking the land until it’s
economically feasible to build new hangars," said Olislagers.
"We’re always looking for ways to diversify our economic
basket, with all revenue coming back to maintain and improve the
Boyer called the award "an extraordinary honor. Elrey Jeppesen
is one of my heroes. His development of aviation charts turned
aviation from seat-of-the-pants flying to a real utility and a
Boyer also had high praise for Centennial Airport. "Centennial
is truly a model of what general aviation airports will have to
become to survive into the future."