BROOKINGS - A lower-than-expected bid on the first phase of the Brookings Airport runway expansion and relocation is allowing the city to get a head start on additional airport work.

The Brookings Register reports that the bid for the first phase of the runway realignment came in at $4.7 million, some 32 percent below engineering estimates.

City Manager Jeff Weldon told councilors this week that Brookings received a grant from the federal government that anticipated the full $7 million amount.

He says the city can apply the excess funding, and it will soon bid a new, separate project under the phase.

Helms & Associates project manager Bob Babcock says as construction proceeds, it will mean some reduced airport use because of a shortened runway. But the airport will not shut down.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.