Stennis Airport Completes $4.85 Million in Runway Improvements

August 6, 2018

HANCOCK COUNTY, MS - Today, the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission (HCPHC) announced the completion of $4.85 million in runway improvements at Stennis International Airport in Kiln, Mississippi. The funds were awarded by the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) airport improvement program and underscores the importance of the aviation and aerospace industry growth to the region.

“Maintaining and upgrading our facilities is key to increasing our competitiveness as a leader in aviation and aerospace along the Gulf Coast,” said Bill Cork, CEO of the HCPHC. “We are thankful for our congressional delegation and federal partners who understand the significance of maintaining first class facilities and infrastructure for both current and future aviation usage.”

With an 8,500-foot grooved and lighted runway, Stennis International Airport is a critical catalyst for economic growth along Mississippi’s Gulf Coast. The 2,400 acres of the airport and airpark are essential to attracting new companies and diversifying economic activity. The airpark is currently home to 16 companies and nearly 400 employees – with room for expansion. Stennis Airport also serves as an important military training facility, relying on both the runway as well as Stennis Space Center’s acoustical buffer zone.

The last major runway pavement overlay was performed nearly twenty years ago, and was at the end of its design life. By partnering with federal and local leaders, HCPHC has invested more than $34.1 million in the airpark and an additional $26.9 million in facility improvements at Port Bienville and the surrounding industrial parks over the last 10 years.

“Collaborating with federal agencies and partners such as Stennis Space Center, the FAA and military leaders brings together the resources needed to enhance our assets while pursuing projects that can create new jobs and investment in our community,” said Robert Kane, president of Commission.  

The runway is a vital infrastructure asset that when combined with the community’s logistical assets, low tax burden and talent pipeline offer a location that is unmatched in the Southeast. Continued investment in the Commission’s facilities highlights Hancock County’s strength in aviation and aerospace as home to Relativity Space, SpaceX, Rolls Royce, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Lockheed Martin and Tyonek Services Group. Together, public entities and private industries create a cluster of human capital and expertise that understand and embrace new ideas and innovative technologies.


About the HCPHC: As the economic development authority for Hancock County, Mississippi, the Hancock County Port & Harbor Commission owns and operates Port Bienville Industrial Park and Stennis International Airport — in addition to fostering business investment for John C. Stennis Space Center, NASA’s premier rocket testing facility. For more information visit

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