Business View Magazine September 2018

176 177 tions, but it also has a conference facility– three 50-person classrooms that can open up to one large room.We already have, between now and the end of the year, about six events scheduled in those rooms.We also have a conference room for companies. And it’s the first time that most of us will be in something that was built after 1960.” The new, $15 million building was funded by a $10 million donation to the university, plus some monies from the airport’s own coffers. “We’re also working on additional donations,” adds Hammon. “We got one of the fractional ownership compa- nies to put up about $1.2 million for the naming rights to the lobby, and we have other companies that are looking at different rooms. This is what the university does; everything on campus has a name on it.” As The Ohio State University Airport looks toward its second century of operation, Hammon maintains that it will continue to serve in its dual role. “What defines us most is balancing the two missions – that learning, discovery, and engage- ment role within the university and the communi- ty, and the corporate service that we provide,” he states. “It’s wearing those two hats. It’s a difficult thing to do, but I think we do it very well.” where it is completely self-sufficient. “We were self-sufficient up until the recession,” he notes. “Without the on-going needed improvements that will help diversify the revenue stream, we remained reliant on fuel sales.Well, when you hit a recession, one of the things people do is stop buying fuel, or they fly less. So, we were hit pretty hard.We’re getting back to the point, now, where we’re almost where we were, and we’re just teetering on the edge of self-sufficiency.With the ground leases, if we can start leasing out some of our excess land, that’s where we’re going to main- tain that self-sufficiency and one that will be able to withstand any fluctuations within the economy. Once you lease land, you have a steady income.” In addition to a future corporate airpark, part of the airport’s updated Master Plan includes an extension of its main runway, which, at present is 5,004 feet long. “We need to get up to 6,000 feet,” Hammon says. “We have a number of companies that fly international and they would like to go nonstop, and they just can’t do it in the 5,000 feet that we have,with the fuel loads that they need to take on. Getting that extra thousand feet will help them; they won’t have to stop at the coast to refuel. So, that’s going to be the other major airfield im- provement that will carry us into the future.” While those two projects may be in the airport’s future, presently it is witnessing the opening of a brand new edifice - the Austin E. Knowlton Exec- utive Terminal & Aviation Learning Center. The new facility will be home to the airport’s admin- istration offices, as well as the entire university flight program, and its onsite FBO. “It’s going to be the first time that all three operating arms of the airport - the management, the FBO, and the flight program–will all be in one facility,” says Ham- mon. “Not only does it house those three opera- ©2018 EnterpriseRent-A-Car. J00757 Enterprise offers the most comprehensive coverage and service to thousands of general aviation airports and FBOs throughout North America. And now we are on-site at Ohio State University Airport to better serve you. From your wings to our wheels. TM For reservations, visit or call 1 800 rent-a-car. PREFERRED VENDORS n Capital City Aviation n Moody-Nolan n Enterprise Holdings THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY AIRPORT