City officials kick off expansion of terminal at Abbeville airport.

Officials with the City of Abbeville took a step closer to realizing a major vision for the Christ Crusta Memorial Airport.

Mayor Mark Piazza and members of the City Council took part Friday morning in a ground-breaking ceremony for the new airport terminal. The project is expected to be completed in nine to 10 months. Once completed, the terminal will be 3,700-square feet. It will feature amenities, including a multi-media room, offices and a lounge area, that will cater to pilots for larger planes.

airport

Former Councilman Louis Joe Hardy, Councilwoman Terry Broussard, Councilman Francis Touchet Jr., Councilwoman Roslyn White, Councilman Brady Broussard Jr., Mayor Mark Piazza and Councilman Francis Plaisance (L-R) officially break ground on the terminal expansion at the Chris Crusta Memorial Airport in Abbeville. Looking on in the back are Mike Mouton, airport supervisor, Gene Sellers Jr., the architect for the project, and David Brousard, who is representing the contractor for the project, Minvielle Lumber.

“The Abbeville municipal airport is an important part of our infrastructure and a great economic tool to attract businesses to Abbeville,” Piazza said. “This new airport terminal will help us compete with surrounding airports and attract more private aircraft to our area.

“This accommodates both aircraft owners and their pilots as our airport continues to grow.”
The project, which is being constructed by Minvielle Lumber, is estimated to cost nearly $900,000. Ten percent of the cost is being paid by the FAA. The remainder is being paid for largely by revenue generated from the oil well at the airport.

Councilman Francis Touchet Jr., who chairs the Airport Committee, said this is all part of an effort that began a couple of years ago when some local businessmen, including Bubba Broussard and Don Hargroder, attended a public meeting to ask about a long-term plan for the airport.

“This process started with these individuals coming to us and giving us some ideas,” Touchet said. “Some of those ideas involved increasing the terminal space, so that we could involve more and larger planes into our airport.
“At that point, we were led by the Mayor and the rest of the City Council to work to put that vision in place.”
Touchet said this is a win-win situation because funding is essentially built into the plan.

“Revenues that we are generating at the airport are revenues that have to be spent at the airport,” Touchet said. “We are utilizing those revenues to do just what we are doing right now.

“This is no doubt a great thing for the City of Abbeville.”

Touchet thanked everyone who has been a part of this effort.

“This would not be possible without the leadership of our Mayor and the commitment of the City Council,” Touchet said. “My special thanks is to Bubba Broussard and Don Hargroder for helping to push us in this direction. We are finally at that point. This is a direction the Mayor has always wanted us to go and we are going to continue to work with everyone to make sure this airport is a driving force for our economy.

“This is such a great day.”

Article and image was originally featured in the Abbeville Meridional on August 26, 2018.