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Gainesville airport completes eco-friendly renovations

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The Gainesville Regional Airport celebrated the completion of the airport’s $1.3 million-renovation Thursday.

The renovations include landscaping, adding energy-efficient glass, improving lighting and altering entryways.

Allan Penksa, CEO of Gainesville-Alachua County Regional Airport Authority, said the renovation process was lengthy. The interior renovations and additions took several years to complete and the final touches to the outside of the building are now complete.

“It means a lot to the airport in terms of just welcoming our passengers – putting a good face on the community,” Penksa said.

Randy Wells, Gainesville city commissioner for District 4, said the airport’s new look will encourage people to invest in the city.

Wells also said the energy-efficient renovations reflect Gainesville’s commitment to sustainability. The airport takes precautions for electric and water conservation.

“It looks beautiful, but it also functions well,” Wells said.

Gainesville Regional Utilities presented a rebate check for $15,000 to the airport as a part of the solar feed-in-tariff program, which provides rebates for solar technology usage.

Energy-efficient renovations also help lower costs.

“All those things help us keep our costs down so we can keep our prices to our airlines down, and hopefully they keep their fairs down to our passengers,” Penksa said.

Emily Stanton wrote this story online.

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