AP NEWS

Cost Of Airport Rental Cars Will Increase By $1

November 30, 2018

PITTSTON TWP. — The cost of renting a car at the airport will rise a dollar a rental day to help pay for a new rental car wash and maintenance center there. Rental cars belonging to Avis, Hertz, Enterprise and their subsidiaries will pass through the estimated $7.45 million center on their way back into circulation. Construction crews will build it on land where the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport’s main terminal access road intersects with Old Navy Way Road. Design should begin next year with construction in 2020, airport director Carl Beardsley Jr. said. “After these cars are cleaned and they’re maintained, they’re sent directly up to the (rental car) parking lot right next to the terminal building and our passengers are able to very easily go over and get in their vehicle,” Beardsley said during an airport board meeting. Airline passengers already get their cars from that lot, but only Avis has a maintenance center nearby on Navy Way Road, Beardsley said. The other rental car companies have maintenance centers and fuel up away from the airport. That means the potential for rental cars getting dirty again in bad weather or stuck in traffic. The project will include a canopy over the sidewalk that leads to the rental car lot next to the terminal. The project will require tearing down Avis’ existing maintenance center and the building that once housed WNEP-TV and later a Verizon retail store, which an airport official said closed about 15 years ago. The center will have two automated car wash bays and one for hand washing, a fueling station, vacuums and offices, said Chris Teich, project manager for Conrac Solutions, which the rental companies hired to develop the center. The rental car companies will establish a company that pays the airport rent to lease the land for an undetermined period. Teich assured Lackawanna County Commissioner Patrick O’Malley, a board member, the center’s appearance will blend in with the airport’s existing buildings. In response to a question by Luzerne County Manager David Pedri, Teich said the center won’t have a full-time staffer. The deal with the airport could include having an airport employee staff the center. Otherwise, a local contractor might do it, he said. The airport board agreed to raise the existing rental car customer facility charge from $2.25 to $3.25 per car per day of rental to cover construction costs. The airport already has $1 million from the charges available for the project, Beardsley said. The lease payments and the facility charge will help cover payments on loans necessary for the project. Contact the writer: bkrawczeniuk@timesshamrock.com, 570-348-9147 @BorysBlogTT

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