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St. George defending airport plan

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ST. GEORGE — St. George is defending a plan for a new $168 million airport against complaints that soil at the proposed site will jeopardize the project.

The city released a fact sheet last week aimed at dispelling what it says are unfounded rumors about the proposal. It says the project is sound and that issues with the soil have been known all along.

The city says engineering detail and soils testing have been performed to ensure a safe runway.

Before construction of the airport can begin, crews have to prepare 1,200 acres and about 4.7 million cubic yards of uneven soil. That includes "blue clay," an expansive soil that must be removed or mixed with other soils to ensure stability.

The replacement airport has been in the works for more than 20 years.