Business View Magazine | Volume 8, Issue 9

215 BUSINESS VIEW MAGAZINE VOLUME 8, ISSUE 9 of a hill with a great 360-degree scenic view. You can also buy aviation and jet fuel from the Wheeling - Ohio County Airport Aviation Centre which is run by the county as well.” Both Escue and Russell have an eye for the future. It has been a while since any real development was done at the airport, but they hope to rectify that soon. For now, it has been just taking stock of what they have and bringing it up to a place where they can launch into capital improvement. The airport sits on 923 acres with plenty of room for additional development, and is currently working on a development plan that will allow them to attract new businesses to the property. There are already two helicopter companies onsite, a waiting list for hangars, and so much potential for more. “Our first thought has been flight schools,” says Russell, “and we’ve talked to local educational institutions that are looking at, perhaps, putting together a flight mechanics training program. Then there are drones, and we are seriously looking at getting on top of that. Logistics is big as well and we can house a delivery service up here. Another thing in our favor is that the Department of Transportation is in the process of constructing a bridge just a bit north of our airport up in Brooke County, which will bring traffic as well as open up a lot of space over in Ohio in Jefferson and Belmont counties. We would love those folks, whatever happens up there, to be able to utilize our airport as much as they can.” “We could also use an aircraft maintenance facility,” adds Escue. “We used to have one, just like we used to have a flight school – and getting both back up here would make a big difference and add to our community recognition. We need to get people to remember that the airport is here.” Summing up the future goals of Wheeling - Ohio WHEEL ING-OHIO COUNTY A I RPORT County Airport, Russell shares, “Our airport really is a hidden gem in Ohio County, and it’s almost been a forgotten piece of the county. We are seriously interested in revitalizing it and part of our event in September is going to be about bringing people back. When I was a youngster, we used to go up to the airport and watch planes come in and out all the time. We don’t have that so much anymore and there are a lot of folks in Ohio County that don’t even realize we have an airport. So we’re going to shine a light on this forgotten gem, and we are seriously focused on bringing in business.”