The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) has awarded $681,000 in grants to Alexandria, the Duluth Airport Authority and Elbow Lake.

The Airport Infrastructure Renewal (AIR) grant program was signed into law by Minnesota Governor Tim Walz in 2019 as part of the jobs omnibus bill. The AIR program provides grants to counties, airport authorities or cities to retain or grow jobs in the area, increase the tax base and create new local economic development.

Details include:

Alexandria, $181,000 

This project consists of renovating the existing Viking Building at the airport. Currently the building is in poor condition and partially occupied by two businesses for manufacturing and warehousing purposes. The city hopes the renovation will allow the businesses to expand and attract new business to the location. The building plans to add six full-time employees in the next five years. Total cost of the renovation is $362,000.

Elbow Lake, $250,000 

This project will add a 4,800 square foot addition to an existing hanger. Prairie Air will use the hanger and plans to add five new full-time employees in the next five years. The total project cost is expected to be $610,000.

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