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Officials have marked the opening of the new Delta Regional Airport in eastern Arkansas.

State and local officials attending a gate-opening ceremony Thursday at the new facility in Colt. The new regional airport will eventually replace current airports in Wynne and Forrest City.

Delta Regional Airport Authority Chairman John Kerr said plans have been in the works for more than 11 years for the new facility. The airport has a 5,000-foot runway and will eventually include a terminal building, a fuel station and an 11-bay hangar. The Times-Herald reported that developers also plan a large corporate-style hangar for businesses.

Officials also celebrated the first official landing when a plane flown by Pine Bluff flight instructor Mike Lain arrived at the airport shortly before noon Thursday.

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