Six airport projects totalling about $2 million have been included in the Province of Alberta’s Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program for 2017.

The government announced the projects in early June and will pay 75 percent of the cost of the projects.

The five airport projects are being funded along with 81 road and bridge improvements.

The biggest aviation project is the upgrading of Slave Lake Airport.

“Having both a forestry air tanker base and air medevac at the Slave Lake Airport, it is easy to see this airport is heavily used by the people of this region and surrounding area,” said Slave Lake Mayor Tyler Warman. “This infrastructure would not exist without provincial support, and after five years of lobbying we are excited to see the province investing again in regional airports.”

Airport funding has been lean in Alberta in recent years and the funding, though relatively low, is seen as a positive sign that the province is recognizing the value of local airports.

The total value of all the projects is $37 million, with bridges getting most of it.

Nevertheless, local governments are happy to see the money again.

“Strong transportation networks are vital to making rural Alberta a great place to live, work and invest. The AAMDC is pleased by the Government of Alberta’s commitment to restoring STIP funding, as it will play a large role in supporting rural municipalities in their continual work to maintain and improve local road bridges, resource roads and community airports. The AAMDC looks forward to working with the Government of Alberta to ensure that STIP funding continues and reflects the strong partnership between the Government of Alberta, the AAMDC and Alberta’s rural municipalities.”