History: On April 23, 2003 FAA issued a Safety / Standards Inspection Report for the Leesburg Executive Airport. One of the report’s recommendations was to provide a new instrument procedure with vertical guidance. This would be accomplished through the installation of a glide slope antenna, and would result in a Category I Instrument Landing System (ILS) approach to the airport.
The Leesburg Executive Airport Master Plan Update was adopted by the Town and was conditionally approved by Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in 2007. This Master Plan Update recommended and provided for the installation of a glide slope antenna to provide an ILS approach to Runway 17.
Project Description: The Instrument Landing System consists of three elements:
- Localizer Antenna. The localizer signal is used to establish and maintain the aircraft's horizontal position until visual contact confirms the runway alignment and location. This project includes replacement of the existing non-Federal localizer.
- Distance Measuring Equipment. A DME measures the line-of-sight distance to the airport. This project includes replacement of the existing non-Federal distance measuring equipment.
- Glide Slope Antenna. The glide slope signal is used to establish and maintain the aircraft's descent rate until visual contact confirms the runway alignment and location. A glide slope differentiates precision from non-precision approaches.
Signals from the Glide Slope antenna operate most reliably when there is minimal reflection from uneven ground, buildings, power lines, vehicles, aircraft, etc. For that reason, the site around the antenna, and especially in front of the facility must be graded to be reasonably level. The area to be graded is approximately 2,200 feet long, with a width ranging from 350’ to 900’ (total of approximately 20 acres).
Under an agreement with the FAA, the Town completed grading of the site to meet the FAA’s criteria. The FAA completed the system by installing the Glide Slope Antenna and the Instrument Landing System became functional on March 10, 2011.
Funding: The Federal Aviation Administration funded 100% of the project.
Funding came from the following appropriations:
- Fiscal year 2004 - $1,000,000
- Fiscal year 2006 - $2,000,000
- American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (stimulus funding) - $500,000
Of this total amount, $950,000 was allocated to the Town to provide the required grading. The Town completed this portion of the project two months ahead of schedule and approximately 33% under budget.
The two original appropriations were made by Congress under the leadership of Congressman Frank Wolf.
Town Staff Contact: Renee LaFollette 703-737-6071
Design Engineer: CH2M Hill
Contractor: The Anderson Company LLC