Deal Made For Land For New Airport

Five years ago the St. Joe Company to donate the land the county needed for a new airport in the West Bay area. Thursday, that promise was fulfilled.

The Panama City-Bay County International Airport Board and Industrial District. Unanimously approved an agreement in which St. Joe donates 4,000 acres of land on highway 388 west, just east of highway 79 and West Bay.

St. Joe is also contributing another 10,000 acres in conservation lands as mitigation for any environmental impact the airport might have, and 37 acres for a 4-lane road into the airport.

If the new airport project fails to materialize, St. Joe gets the land back, but agrees to reimburse the state and the airport authority for their investment. Airport Chairman Joe Tannehill worked over six months to hammer out the agreement, which was reached late Thursday.

The next move in the process is to seek bidders who would be interested in buying the land on which the current airport sits.