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May 15, 2011

Austin Executive is Operational

 By Jay Carpenter

Austin Executive FBO - view from arriving aircraft
Austin Executive FBO
View from arriving aircraft


May 15, 2011, Austin, Texas.
The new Austin Executive Airport (KEDC) is open for business as of midnight, Wednesday the 11th of May, 2011. Airport owner Ron Henriksen and his staff have worked diligently for the past two years to transform the former run-down Bird’s Nest Airport into a state-of-the-art facility complete with a new 6000+ ft. runway that has a GPS approach, a new terminal building and many new hangar facilities. The location of the airport is just north of Manor, Texas on Hwy. 130.

Central Texas general aviation has suffered for the past 12 years when Austin lost two airports in as many months back in 1999 with the closure of Robert Mueller Airport and Tim’s Air Park (formerly Austin Executive). The new Austin Bergstrom International Airport barely supported general aviation and the city of Austin was reluctant to provide GA services. With this new airport now open, general aviation in Texas will benefit. The local economy will also receive a much needed shot in the arm when pilots learn of this new gift to aviation in Texas and bring their dollars when visiting Austin and Central Texas.

TXAA has kept a running story about this airport’s development and manager Jim Craig contacted our office this week saying, “There is a rumor going around that the big Yellow X’s have been removed from our 13-31 runway.” We received the exclusive contact from airport owner Ron Henriksen on May 13 saying, “We are now open, officially midnight Wednesday. The airport looks pretty nice. When can you visit?” The next day, Mr. Henriksen gave the go ahead for this press release.

TXAA staff visited the airport on Saturday the 14th, and found several planes had already landed. The new terminal facility is truly impressive. A wonderful staff greets pilots and passengers with Texas hospitality. There are several refreshment centers, pilots briefing room, conference room, sleep rooms, and even a media room where this reporter found theater type seating with the movie “Battle of Britain” playing on the huge screen mounted on the wall.

Henriksen also brought down from Houston his beautifully restored 1914 Indian motorcycle which is displayed on the landing of the staircase going to the upstairs offices. The fuel farm is operational with four trucks serving Jet-A and 100LL. There are plenty of tie down spaces and under construction are new T-hangars. There will be a maintenance facility for aircraft repair and plenty of parking for autos. There is even a nice landscape area for Fido to do his thing before or after flying.

All airports should be this lucky! It’s like Disneyland for pilots and their passengers. The airport is just a few minutes from downtown Austin, and the new Hwy. 130 connects the local communities of Lockhart, San Marcos, Pflugerville, Round Rock and Georgetown.

 


Arrival Parking


First Customers


Indian Unload


Indian & Ron


Media Room

Rolls-Royce Concorde Engine on display at Austin Executive Airport

Ron Henriksen bought this Concorde engine some four years ago at an auction (by phone) held in England. He was high bidder, but that was just the beginning, as it was a long process to have the engine shipped to Houston.  The engine and stand weighed approximately 8,000 lbs. and were on a boat for almost a month.  It has been sitting in a Houston warehouse waiting for completion of the Austin Executive Airport.  Gary Cole spent three weeks polishing it and building the custom stand. Upon arrival at Austin Executive, it took ten men to get it inside the lobby. 

 

 

Pilots wishing information about the new facility services at or perhaps moving to Austin Executive Airport are encouraged to contact EDC manager Jim Craig at 512-AIRPORT, or email him at JCraig@austinexecutiveairport.com.

General aviation is blessed to have this wonderful gift from Ron Henriksen. Thank you Mr. Henriksen!

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