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Federal grant will fund new air traffic control tower at Lynchburg Regional Airport

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WASHINGTON (WSLS 10) - The city of Lynchburg is set to receive nearly $600,000 to replace its current air traffic control tower.

Senators Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine announced on Tuesday that the U.S. Department of Transportation is giving $597,250 to Lynchburg to fund construction of a new air traffic control tower at the Lynchburg Regional Airport.

"The existing air traffic control tower at Lynchburg Regional Airport is more than 50 years old and has been slated to be replaced for many years," said the Senators. "We are pleased that the City of Lynchburg will receive federal funds to help support construction of the new tower. These investments are critical to upgrading our nation's air traffic control system, which is in dire need of modernization."

The existing tower, which was built in 1963, has reached the end of its useful life, and construction of a new tower was recommended in the airport's master plan approved by the Federal Aviation Administration in 2010. The average life span for an air traffic control tower is about 25 years to 30 years, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

In 2015, there were 101,870 takeoffs and landings at Lynchburg Regional Airport, an average of about 279 per day.