Leaving Harris Hill Road (H2R) last Saturday afternoon, I drove over to the San Marcos Municipal Airport (SMMA). You may recall that last Spring/Summer 2009, the SPOKES club had 3 great autocross events there. It was a huge expanse of a variety of concrete surfaces that was loved by all competitors. We were not able to compete there beyond those 3 events. The airport did not have any problems with how the events were run, but they were concerned about safety.
This is an active (although low volume) airport. From time to time there would be an airplane taxiing just off the apron from where our course was set up to compete. When that happened we would stop the cars on course & wait for the plane to finish taxiing. They decided the possible safety threat was the deciding factor in discontinuing to have autocrosses there.
It was mentioned that with the construction of a new air traffic control tower, the safety issue could possibly be more easily addressed.
The new $2.2 million control tower will be part of the Federal Contract Tower Program and staffed by four to six civilian Air Traffic Controllers. The 9-story (100′ in height) facility will have 2,295 square feet, including a base building, elevator, and control cab where professional air traffic controllers will manage flights in and out of the reliever airport.
Here’s a shot of Karlino, bravely “addressing” a vintage fighter jet, just outside of the Confederate Air Force (CAF). I know this was a set up shot, but, I thought it was cool!
So, here’s the new tower construction progress, from a variety of angles…
The air traffic control tower looks to be just a few months away from completion (my guess). We’ll see what the SMMA & SPOKES powers that be decide about future autocross activity there. Should be interesting…
Racing Ready is looking forward to future autocross events back at the San Marcos Municipal Airport!
P.S. – Here’s proof of further progress – updated photos from January 23, 2010: