New Braunfels approval of $320K toward improvements at airport expected to bring in more revenue

New Braunfels City Council approved a $320,000 expenditure toward the Aviation Academy of America on Nov. 9. (Warren Brown/Community Impact Newspaper)
New Braunfels City Council approved a $320,000 expenditure toward the Aviation Academy of America on Nov. 9. (Warren Brown/Community Impact Newspaper)

New Braunfels City Council approved a $320,000 expenditure toward the Aviation Academy of America on Nov. 9. (Warren Brown/Community Impact Newspaper)

City officials approved a $320,000 expenditure toward infrastructure improvements for a company housed at the New Braunfels Regional Airport.

The move came during City Council's Nov. 9 meeting and specifically helps underwrite infrastructure improvements at the Aviation Academy of America. Those improvements, city staff said, should bring numerous opportunities for increased revenue to New Braunfels.

Jeff Jewell, the city's director of economic and community development, said the allocation, which city information states is slightly more than 10% of the project's overall cost of about $3 million, will be paid back over five years, per the terms of the agreement.

The Aviation Academy of America has been located at the New Braunfels Regional Airport for several years and locally trains roughly 80 students per year, Jewell said.

"Part of this project is being undertaken in order to accommodate what [AAA] anticipates will be an increased demand in their flight training, as well as their maintenance. ... They also have a new business that they're entering into with drone instruction, as well," Jewell said. "And they're proposing to build a 23,000-[square-foot] build-to-suit hangar at a total cost of about $3 million."


The hangar will facilitate a consolidation of the company's maintenance, aircraft storage, classrooms, dispatch and administration capabilities under one roof, Jewell said.

City information stated the funding allocation was initially approved by the New Braunfels Economic Development Corp. this summer, and Jewell explained there is significant economic benefit to the city in the form of increased property and sales tax revenue, as well as fuel purchases.

The terms of the agreement with the city require the AAA to create and maintain at least 20 new positions for a period of five years at an annual base gross payroll of $800,000, to purchase at least 60,000 gallons of fuel annually from the New Braunfels Regional Airport and to pay back the $320,000 to the city over a five-year period at about $64,000 per year.
By Brian Rash
Brian has been a reporter and editor since 2012. He wrote about the music scene in Dallas-Fort Worth before becoming managing editor for the Graham Leader in Graham, Texas, in 2013. He relocated to Austin, Texas, in 2015 to work for Gatehouse Media's large design hub. He became the editor for the Lake Travis-Westlake publication of Community Impact in August 2018. From there he became a dual-market editor for Community Impact's New Braunfels and San Marcos-Buda-Kyle editions. Brian is now a senior editor for the company's flagship papers, the Round Rock and Pflugerville-Hutto editions.