Comments can now be received for the Site Location of Development Major Amendment until the review process is complete, which is estimated at 90 days. Please send any comments to Maria.Lentine-Eggett@Maine.gov
PLEASE SEE ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT TAB BELOW FOR PUBLIC NOTICE AND THE ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT
Question: The FAA stated they have not funded the planning Phase 1a project. What is the status of that funding?
Answer: The FAA is in receipt of the grant application for the Phase 1a project. Money has been transferred from two other airports in the State of Maine that had unused funds. These funds, equating $206,400, have been slated by the FAA to fund Phase 1a. This grant is expected to be issued by September 1. As promised, D&K will keep the Town apprised on the status of the grant.
1. Jim Carrigan, Rangeley Selectboard Member, indicated that the financials for this project had not been
addressed in the previous informatation and that the local share of this project would be challenge to
meet. Mr. Rouelle began by describing the funding mechanisms for the AIP program which, for this
project, will be primarily through discretionary funding. He then conveyed that the project team
consists of Daryl Sterling, Rangeley Economic Development consultant, the Maine Department of
Economic Development and the MaineDOT who have met several times to discuss other funding
streams to potentially cover the local share of the project. Mr. Rouelle emphasized that it is the goal of
the project to have the local financial share be zero and that the team will continue to vet this important
2. Mark Beauragaurd, Airport Commission Member, asked how this project coincides with the Rangeley
brand. Mr. Rouelle indicated that the current airport designation is not anticipating to change with the
proposed project and that the aircraft fleet mix that currently uses the airport will not drastically change.
He explained that the current airport Master Plan designates the airport as a B-II airport which is the
basis for several design criteria including approach speeds, runway and taxiway setbacks, obstruction
Public Meeting 1 Aviation Division
clearance requirements and instrument procedures. He emphasized that the proposed Runway
Length Analysis will not deviate from this designation and hence not physically allow large jet traffic to
utilize the airfield. Mr Dickson then spoke to the point about jet traffic and that most turbine powered
aircraft require 5,000’ or more to operate on which is not what is needed for the KingAir 200. He
proceeded to inform the public on the technical requirements of the LifeFlight aircraft and that several
factors, most importantly field elevation, dictate the required runway length. Mr. Beauragaurd also
stated he had heard initially an extension of 500’ was indicated and now it is 1,000’, how did it
increase. Mr. Rouelle indicated that the Runway Length Analysis will review the factors of the project
and determine a final runway length that is justified for the purpose and need of the airport. Josh
Dickson also explained that runway lengths needed to take off and land depend on weather
conditions. An example he gave is if there was a little bit of snow 4,000 feet would be sufficient if there
is more than a little snow with a cross wind then 4200 feet would be tight. Many factors contribute to
3. Nick Pathiakis, asked out of the 40 flights LifeFlight had, 23 were indicated were cancelled or did not
take place and of which, how many were weather related. Mr. Dickson indicated that the majority were
weather related. It was then asked would deicing facilities be required where Mr. Dickson indicated
that would be a high need to increase mission accomplishments from LifeFlight. Finally, it was asked if
the runway will require faster clearing than it currently is. Mr Rouelle talked about strategies he
worked towards in the State of Vermont and their 10 airports. He indicated that DuBois & King will
work with the town to implement strategies that will hopefully improve efficiency and minimize
increased maintenance costs. Harold Schaetzle, Rangeley Airport Commission member and
NorthStar Base Manager indicated that there are times that LifeFlight is not called, their experience is
enough to know whether LifeFlight would be able to fly their Rotor-craft into Rangeley based on
4. Ken Haley, local earthwork contractor, shared his personal experience with a family member requiring
emergency medical transport and due to circumstances LifeFlight was unable to make the trip. He
provided his support for the project.
5. Harold Schaetzle, indicated how stunned he was by the statistics LifeFlight of Maine had and indicated
additional runway length would be a good thing for their ability to service the community.
6. Colleen Bailey, indicated she lives adjacent to the airport property and has concern of what potential
impacts this project will have on her property, specifically the value it. Mr. Rouelle indicated this is a
legitimate concern and that these types of issues will be reviewed and answered once more
information is gathered and a clearer project direction has been laid out. Ms. Bailey indicated she
hopes the project team keeps her informed throughout the process. Mr. Rouelle indicated the priority
of keeping the public informed and reiterated the project information process.
7. Tim Pellerin, Rangeley Town Manager, had a citizen contact him that was unable to make the meeting
wanting to insure noise wouldn’t be an issue. Mr. Rouelle indicated that as part of DuBois & Kings
scope of work, a noise consultant will work with the project team to answer these concerns. He
indicated that by lengthening the runway, the noise should actually reduce. Mr. Dickson also
commented on this that currently the loudest aircraft utilizing the airport is the Cessna 185 which is
much louder than many small turbine powered aircraft that might utilize the airport. He also indicated
that because of the shortness of the current runway, high performance takeoff maneuvers are needed
which requires the pilot to apply the brakes, push full throttle and release at a high engine RPM to
maximize thrust. This all creates a more noisy environment and with a longer runway, these same
aircraft can gradually apply power which reduces the duration of noise.
8. Mark Beauragard asked if moving the runway threshold 500’ to the east will it be less noise. Mr.
Rouelle indicated that it would as the other end of the runway will likely be moved further west which
will allow departing aircraft to be off the runway sooner and be higher in the air than with the current
runway threshold locations and length.
9. Fred Sailey asked if there was room built into the schedule for slippage and if meeting dates were
etched in stone. Mr. Rouelle indicated that this project is a high priority, fast-paced project that doesn’t
leave a lot of room for missing key milestones. He indicated there was a little room but not much. Mr.
Rouelle also indicated that the project team will hit the required meeting dates and if issues arise that
require meetings to be postponed, that new dates will be set.
10. It was asked what are the transit times for the helicopter and the fixed wing. Mr. Dixon indicated it
depends on where they need to be transported but the majority go to Maine Medical Center in Portland
or Central Maine Medical in Lewiston.
11. Cindy Egan, Rangeley selectboard chair asked why the schedule was so accelerated and what was
driving that. Mr. Dickson indicated that most of the reason behind the fast pace is the involvement of
Public Meeting 1 Aviation Division
LifeFlight and their needs and discussions with FAA and MaineDOT. Mr. Rouelle indicated another
driver was the competitiveness of discretionary grants. In order to compete, a grant application
requires submission by May 1st, 2018.
12. Cindy Egan, Rangeley selectboard chair, commented that a 5% local match of $10 Million is a lot of
money and can the project team keep the town and public informed with this concern. Mr. Judge
reiterated that LifeFlight are working with state and federal delegates on finding additional funds for the
local share. Mr. Rouelle indicated that this process will keep this concern as a top priority.
13. It was asked if LifeFlight only had the one plane where Mr. Dixon indicated LifeFlight operates one
fixed wing and three helicopters.
14. Dennis Marquis praised LifeFlight for their efforts in the Region and Maine and asked if someone could
explain what kind of medical care is provided by their equipment. Mr. Judge indicated that they have
as sophisticated intensive care and emergency equipment than most hospital emergency rooms in the
15. It was asked what Saddlebacks interests are in the project. Mr. Williams reemphasized Saddlebacks
interests are two fold, first, having critical care transport services for their ski resort is critical to their
forecasted operations and secondly can provide the infrastructure needed for those who can’t fly in
Informational Meeting 8-24-17
Q: What would be considered a large aircraft that could fly into Stephen A. Bean Municipal Airport?
A: The airport is a BII airport; it is designed for 12,500 lbs. If an aircraft that weighed 40,000 lbs wanted to fly in they would require a waiver from the Airport Manager.
Q: Are the dismissed alternatives completely dismissed or is their potential for those to comeback up.
A: Yes they would be permanently dismissed. Many factors were considered and studied when creating the alternatives, these include Environmental Impacts, Costs, Road Relocation, Flexibility, etc... Due to the research put into the design, the dismissed alternatives were dismissed because they do not make sense for this project, for example the alternatives that were dismissed that due to taking of peoples properties. We do not want to take anyone's properties; this is not good for the town or the project so this alternative is completely dismissed.
Q: All alternatives show 1,000 ft, are you not willing to consider 400ft or 500 ft?
A: By not going to 1,000 feet (actually plan is 1,099ft) you are not meeting the goal, which is building to the design aircraft which is the King Air 200. This aircraft has been a part of our plans for 20 years. Also Life Flight has stated that they need the 1,000 feet to safely land 365 days a year. If we do not meet these goals then FAA would not find any reason to fund it. We could possibly do 4,100 feet but are providing a safer runway at 4,200 feet and following our goal.
Q: Are all designs based on a 10 million dollar grant?
A: The answer is yes and no, some of the alternatives were over the estimated 10 million dollars and many of these were dismissed. The preferred alternative that was discussed, which is the 690ft to the North West and 409 ft to the South East, does come within this range. Keep in mind though we cannot predict all unforeseen items that may raise the cost.
Q: An abutter was told that Loon Lake Road was going to turn into Gile Road, they asked if this was correct.
A: This is completely false; Loon Lake Rd will not go into any other roads by the Airport. It will be relocated around the end of the runway but all on Airport Property.
Q: Will they make the runway wider?
A: No they will not add width to the runway; currently the runway is 75 ft which is the width for a BII Runway.
Series of questions by the same person:
Q: On other alternatives where it was all on the Northwest end what is the amount of wetland impact? What is the impact to the wetlands on the preferred alternative?
A: Impact is estimated at around 7.2 acres for the alternative 2 which is 1099 ft to the North West. The estimated impact for preferred alternative #3 is around 2.9 acres.
Q: Is the 5 acre difference the reason for the preferred alternative?
A: There are many reasons for the preferred alternative, they include:
Environmental impact (The Army Corp of Engineers charges $110,000 per acre of affected wetland.)
Volume of Fill at $3-$5 a yard
Q: Could there be a land swap for the affected wetlands?
A: The Army Corp of Engineers is not interested in doing land swaps; the preferred way is to find a design that minimizes the impacts to the environment, which would be alternative #3.
Q: There are concerns about property value going down.
A: Consultant stated that he has never seen a value go down; historically you see the values go up. FAA does not require this sort of research because it has never been an issue. A citizen stood up and added that he sees the property value going up because there are a lot of people who want to buy houses close to airports.
Q: What if when this project goes to bid, the bids come back over the estimated cost of the project?
A: Grants to the FAA are not submitted until after the bids come back. We apply for the grant based on the bid amounts. The FAA pays 90%, State 5% and Town 5%, we also cannot apply for the grant unless the State and Town have their 5% match. We have been working on getting the town's 5% from other sources and things are going quite well. Plan is that the tax payers do not have to pay anything for this project.
Q: Will this project end up generating any revenue for the town?
A: In evaluating the airport and in design criteria there was a lot of forecasting that was done. The airport currently is under served because it does not have an FBO (Fixed Based Operator) to receive airplanes, apron tie down fees, aircraft maintenance, etc. One of the alternatives is to have a terminal building installed and then an aircraft maintenance hangar. That in itself is land leases, tax bills and revenue pertaining to the work the FBO does. The goal is to get the airport out of the budgetary red and into the budgetary black. The FBO is their own business and they would pay the town. We will find appropriate ways to minimize expenses and increase revenues,
Q: Is the project being done because of Saddleback Mountain?
A: No, the purpose of this project is due to the need of Life Flight and the service to our remote area. This project would provide Life Flight’s services nearly 365 days a year.
Q: Would more lighting be required?
A: There would be more runway lighting, this lighting is pilot controlled so they are not on unless there is a plane landing or taking off.
Q: Instead of relocating Loon Lake Road could we put in a tunnel or a large culvert?
A: FAA will not put in a tunnel for this project, they have made this clear. The FAA will pay for construction but not maintenance, the town would be responsible for maintaining a culvert if they would agree to put it in. Tim LeSiege from MDOT reiterated that FAA will not build bridges or tunnels.
Q: An abutter was concerned about snow being blown into their driveway if the road was moved and she felt that due to this the town would have to take their property.
A: The consultants were very clear that no properties would be taken for this project. The trees that are on the edge of the property are a natural wood fence for the snow. If after the first winter it appears to be an issue then investigating the installation of snow fence would commence.
Q: What is the difference between the equipment and care provided by LifeFlight and NorthStar?
A: Rangeley and the surrounding areas are fortunate to have NorthStar, one of Maine’s best and most recognized emergency medical services (EMS), as their frontline of emergency care system.
In cases of medical emergencies NorthStar is dispatched via the 911 system to provide immediate care and resuscitation and transportation to Franklin Memorial Hospital.
For patients needing care beyond the capabilities of NorthStar or Franklin Memorial, and working with the physicians at FMH, the on-scene paramedic initiates a LifeFlight response bringing a helicopter directly to the patient. With the extension of the runway LifeFlight’s new fixed wing to add to the care team.
EMS services are licensed by Maine EMS with specific levels of care, clinical protocols, and equipment. NorthStar paramedic staffed and equipped ambulances carry full resuscitation gear for trauma, respiratory, or cardiac arrest and provide immediate care for every type of injury or illness.
LifeFlight is more a flying hospital than an ambulance, staffed with critical care nurses and paramedics who also work in the major trauma center Intensive Care Units. The LifeFlight teams work are given physician level protocols for all age patients and all diseases and injuries.
In addition to the equipment carried on Northstar Ambulances LifeFlight carries the following:
- Invasive hemodynamic monitoring
- Multi-mode ventilators for the youngest of children to adults to take over a patients breathing if necessary
- An ICU equipped pharmacy for initial and hospital level emergency care
- Blood and plasma
- Multiple medication infusion pumps
- Advanced airway management technology and skills
- Portable hospital laboratory
- Specialized equipment for newborns and very young children.
Q: Could there be two Environmental Impact Studies for the alternatives discussed?
A: There is not enough activity to do an environmental impact study, it would have to be an environmental assessment. There has already been an environmental study on both alternatives. The cost and environmental impacts have already been researched. In the beginning there were 7 alternatives but from evaluating the cost and the environmental impact it was felt the best option was alternative #3. The two alternatives discussed, the preferred alternative #3, as well as alternative #2 will be given to the experts at MDOT and FAA for them to review and decide what they will fund.
Q: Is the Runway, Taxiway & buildings all one project?
A: The grant for the runway would go in May 1, 2018, the grant would be issued by the end of August and during the winter months the project would start with the clearing of trees at the end of runway 14. Then between August-snow flies of 2018 work on the Loon Lake Road side with road relocation. April of 2019 complete runway on the North West side and after that repave the existing runway. With the Grant application for 2019 we would complete the parallel taxi way. So it is not all one project, it is broken out in the CIP as different projects over several years.
4 Factors for aircraft performance:
- Weight: Fuel is the largest determinant of weight. The more fuel we have on board, the farther we can go allowing for backup options in cases of poor weather. These backup options are a requirement of the FAA to accept flights in poor weather. If we do not have the required amount of fuel to reach the backups, we cannot take the flight. The heavier the aircraft, the more runway needed as it takes longer to get a heavier airplane into the air and longer to get it stopped.
- Temperature: The hotter the weather, the greater reduction of aircraft performance (lift) which requires a longer runway. This is more crucial for take-off than it is for landing.
- Altitude: The higher the altitude, the greater reduction of aircraft performance which requires a longer runway.
- Runway Conditions: The more contamination (water, snow, ice) that exists on a runway, the less effective the braking action becomes necessitating a longer runway for landings or aborted take-offs. This is more crucial for landing than take-off due to the lower temperatures (usually) required to produce ice and snow runway contamination. Wet runway penalty can be eliminated by grooving the runway.
There are basically 5 planning profiles for take-off, I will explain the first 3:
- Take-off length: this is the minimum amount of runway to get the aircraft in the air from a static take off.
- Over a 50 foot obstacle: this is the amount of horizontal distance it takes to get the aircraft above 50 feet.
- Accelerate/Stop: The "accelerate/stop distance" is the total distance required to accelerate a twin engine airplane to 'take-off speed' (v1) and, assuming failure of an engine at the instant that speed is attained, to bring the airplane to a stop on the remaining runway. This is what LifeFlight uses to determine runway length and is a standard in the Medevac industry.
- The other 2 profiles are Accelerate/Go and Balanced Field, but those are longer still so I will not go into them.
3 Scenarios for Rangeley, we will use 12,000 lbs/2000 foot elevation for these scenarios:
- Dry runway, Hot summer day (86f). Take-Off: 3800 feet. Landing:3020. Landing Wet Runway:3480
- Cold, Clear, February Day (15deg f), No snow or ice on runway at all (clean/dry/bare). Take-Off: 3150. Landing: 3020.
- Winter day, snowing on and off for a couple of days, fresh dry snow over Cold (22f) Take-Off:3200. Landing: 4350. (we would have to burn off some extra fuel to make 4200 feet, but it is doable
Q: Do we know what the financial responsibility of the Town will be for this project.
A: Mr. Rouelle indicated that the project team continues to vet this concern. We have completed initial analysis of utilizing Chick Hill as a borrow pit and are confident that this resource can be utilized as it was during the last runway extension as Force Account. Initial data indicates that most if not all of the local share can be obtained. This process still required FAA review and approval. In addition, the team continues to work with the State of Maine Department of Economic and Community Development to secure additional funding to make up the difference if needed.
Q: Do we know how much the project will cost, it started at $12M and is now $10M?
A: Mr. Rouelle indicated that D&K, in working through the Runway Length Analysis, Environmental Assessment, and Conceptual Design has refined project costs. He indicated that projects over $10M warrant significantly more scrutiny and that goal of this project is to stay under that limitation.
Q: What if this project comes in over $10M when it is bid.
A: Mr. Rouelle indicated that at that point the design team, which includes the town, engineer and contractor, will need to determine if the scope of the project can be changed to reduce costs in-line with the budget.
Q: Do we know how much material can come from Chick Hill?
A: Mr. McDougall indicated the project needs approximately 500,000 CY for the project
Q: How much per cubic yard can we get for this material?
A: Mr. McDougall indicated that in his past experience anywhere from $4-$15 per cubic yard. It reiterated that this still needs to be approved by the FAA
Q: Can you explain what additional resources will be needed to maintain this project once in place?
A: Mr. Rouelle stated that D&K is working with the town to develop maintenance action plans that cover pavement and turf maintenance. He indicated that we are adding approximately 30% more pavement with the runway extension and that one can make the assumption that costs will increase accordingly. That said, by employeeing snow plowing and mowing practices these costs can be minimized as the action plans will dictate. On top of that, D&K is looking at projects like a solar array to offset electrical usage for the airport. D&K will continue to work with the town to ensure this project and it future responsibilities are known and a plan is in place to practically maintain these new facilities.
Q: Why were other alternatives not included in the EA?
A: Mr. Benson indicated that the EA process only looks at two alternatives for environmental impacts, the no-build alternative and the preferred alternative that was determined from the Runway Length Analysis. The other alternatives developed in the RLA are dismissed for review in the EA.