Buchan Airport reopens after use as storm debris management site

Rothenbach Park in Sarasota and portions of Englewood Sports Complex parking lots remain closed

Buchan Airport in Venice reopened on Wednesday, Jan. 25, having served as a vital South County debris management site since October 2022, following impacts of Hurricane Ian, Sarasota County staff reported.

The county’s debris contractors used the facility as a staging area, for vegetative materials collected from southern areas of unincorporated Sarasota County, a county advisory explained.

“The county’s debris contractors are in the final stages of removing the remaining debris,” along with beginning site restoration, “which will not impact aircraft activities,” the advisory pointed out.

Throughout the process, Buchan Airport has been assessed by employees with the county’s Solid Waste, Public Works, and Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources departments; the Florida Department of Transportation Airport Inspection and Safety Division; the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the advisory noted.

Rothenbach Park on Bee Ridge Road in Sarasota and portions of the Englewood Sports Complex parking lots remain closed, as those facilities continue to serve as debris management sites, the advisory said. The Sports Complex is open, with access limited to Pine Street, the advisory added.