Permanent air traffic control tower at Leesburg airport plans take off
June 14, 2023
The Town of Leesburg, Virginia, has taken first steps toward building a permanent air traffic control tower at Leesburg Executive Airport, after the unexpected termination of an experimental remote tower program.
On Tuesday, the Leesburg Town Council voted unanimously to approve funding for the initial stage of planning to build a permanent brick and mortar tower, with hopes that it would be assisting pilots in taking off and landing by 2030.
The council approved spending $270,000 for a siting study. According to a staff report, the total cost of the project is projected to be $16 million, with the Federal Aviation Administration and Virginia Department of Aviation paying 98% of the projects.
Since 2015, the company that works with Leesburg Executive Airport, Saab, has been operating an experimental remote tower system for air traffic control. However, in February, the FAA announced it would end the remote program on June 14.
The decision raised fear that the ever-growing number of corporate jets and small planes at the Leesburg airport would have to take off and land without guidance from air traffic controllers.