Colorado Air and Space Port slated for construction at Front Range Airport

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ADAMS COUNTY, Colo. -- A new air and space port is slated for construction at Front Range Airport, which is just a few miles southeast of Denver International Airport.

The Colorado Air and Space Port will be a dual facility that will be able to accommodate the growing demand for space travel and exploration.

"We’re the number-one aerospace per capita economy in the country. There’s a lot we can do in terms of small satellite, space tourism, research," said Dave Ruppel, who heads the program.

Ruppel said space planes won't take off like big rockets, but just like regular jets.

"When it comes back into the atmosphere, then it re-engages its jet engines and it flies back to the Air and Space Port and lands just like a conventional aircraft," Ruppel said.

He also pointed out that increased space travel and exploration will have a great impact on how people get around on earth.

"Right now, it’s space tourism. Next in line is to figure out ways to do point-to-point travel. A trip to Tokyo, for example, from Colorado today takes roughly 13 hours. You could do that trip in an hour and a half with a space plane," Ruppel said.

Expansion for the Colorado Air and Space Port should begin within five to eight years. Additional runways will be needed, coming at a cost of $8 million to $10 million.

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