HENRY COUNTY (WSLS 10) – While the upgrades at the Blue Ridge Airport may not be a major overhaul, they are nevertheless needed, according to the airport’s manager.
The airport parking lot will be repaved, something that hasn’t happened since the mid-1980s.
The landscaping at the airport will also be updated and new signage will be added. This is all being payed for by two grants.
The first, a $25,000 grant from an anonymous donor fund with the Martinsville Area Community Foundation and the second is a $50,000 grant from the Martinsville-Henry County Economic Development Corporation.
Airport Manager Jason Davis said all of this is needed in order for the airport to continue to make a positive impression on businesses flying into and out of the area.
The impression that businesses get at the airport could make a difference on whether they do business in the area or not.
The airport is also important because of the Martinsville Speedway.
Many drivers and owners use the airport to fly into and out of the area on race weekend.
Drivers and owners often talk about their experience in the community outside the track, including at the airport, and having positive feedback from a driver or an owner could potentially have an impact on ticket sales.
“If they’re able to have that positive experience, that conveys to the fans, which hopefully results in some ticket sales for us,” said Brooks Taylor, the speedway’s communication director.
“When there are perspective companies coming to town, the first thing they see is the airport,” Davis emphasized.
The goal is to have all of the work at the airport done by the time the NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase comes to town at the end of October.