In an editorial cleverly titled “Hangar plan is taking off,” in May 2019, we supported the action by Meriden’s City Council to approve bonding for new hangars at Meriden Markham Airport. “With a waiting list of around 60 pilots looking to store their aircraft indoors at Meriden Markham,” we wrote, “the new hangars are expected to pay for themselves through rental fees within the 20-year term of the bonds and then to continue generating revenue for the city for many years.”
A year and a half later, and six months into a pandemic that has thrown nearly everything into uncertainty, city officials held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for what project director Wilma Petro called the largest project in the airport’s 100-year-plus history. Five hangars were added, three on the airport’s Meriden side and two on the Wallingford side.
The move toward the future came after some debate. There was the feeling that in difficult times the airport project should be limited in scale. But proponents held their ground. “This is a huge day for the airport,” said Petro on the day of the ribbon-cutting.
“This is a part (of Meriden) that’s been neglected for years through no one’s particular fault. It just was, it was treated as a step-child,” said Cathy Battista, a former city councilor who is a member of Meriden’s Aviation Commission. The addition of the hangars shows an airport no longer a subject of neglect.
It made sense to us in the spring of 2019 for the city to make the most of this municipal asset by continuing to upgrade the function and appearance of the airport. It continues to make sense in the fall of 2020.