Jan 2, 2014 7:40 PM by Allison Bourne-Vanneck
Lafayette Regional Airport is bidding farewell to a piece of history.
Crews are tearing down the Paul Fournet Air Service hangar. It was first built in 1942 and was used as a training facility for the Army Air Corps. The demolition of the World War II hangar is a $580,000 project, which is funded through a grant and by the airport.
The removal of the hangar will create space for a new terminal. There's already a booklet mapping out what a new terminal at Lafayette Regional Airport would look like.
"We can build a new terminal while utilizing the existing terminal and then switch over. Then take down the old terminal to make area for yet to be determined opportunities," Greg Roberts, the Director of Aviation at Lafayette Regional Airport, said.
Roberts said the new terminal is expected to cost between $60 million and $90 million. There's still no time frame on when what's on paper could become a reality. Officials are still looking into ways to pay for it.
"I think it would be wonderful to have a new terminal here. We might be able to get rid of those little planes that we have to fly out of to get to our destinations," said Elsie Dugas, who flies out of Lafayette Regional Airport.
"More people could get out of here, more planes, not as much not as much people would be backed up in here. It would be faster to get people where they need to be," said traveler Hunter Bourgeois, who was flying out of Lafayette Regional today.
Roberts says a new terminal could mean more flights to more destinations out of the airport.
"It's really hard to attract the airlines to come to Lafayette when we don't have space for them," Roberts said. "You know we don't have gates. We don't have capacity, so you know if you build it they will come maybe. But it starts with a plan and we have an initial an initial idea of where we want to go."