Roanoke Regional Airport improvements taking off - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Roanoke Regional Airport improvements taking off

If you've been inside Roanoke Regional Airport lately, you may have noticed a few changes.  The terminal is currently in the process of getting a major facelift -- and already several renovations are being completed.

Early Monday morning, crews installed a brand new escalator the airport says should be up and running in the very near future.

It's just one of the many improvement projects currently underway at Roanoke Regional Airport.  Airport officials say the terminal is nearly 25 years old and has had no major work done to it since it was first built -- which is why they've opted to move forward with new construction now.

They say when the escalators were first installed back in the 1980's, they were already considered older models.  Now, whenever one of them breaks down, the airport is forced to order custom replacement parts because standard replacement parts no longer exist -- and they say that gets expensive and time consuming.  So the decision was made to replace the escalators as part of the general renovation project.

"It's very exciting," said Amanda DeHaven, spokesperson for Roanoke Regional Airport.  "It was exciting [this morning] tweeting all of the updates on the new escalator.  And people were actually following me tweeting about our new escalator."

DeHaven says a new women's bathroom on the first floor should be completed either Monday or Tuesday.  Improvements to two gates are already completed – including more seating and work stations where travelers can charge their cell phones, laptops, and tablets.  The color scheme inside the airport is also starting to change.

"The blue was starting to look drab," said DeHaven.  "So seeing the new colors is great.  It's going to look really nice."

Crews are on track to complete all renovations by August.  They still have the rest of the gates, the men's bathroom, the second escalator, and elevators to finish.





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