WASHINGTON – Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport plans to speed completion of runway improvements thanks to a $19.5 million federal grant.

Airport Director Kelley L. Johnson said Friday that the U.S. Department of Transportation grant would allow them to complete the work by the end of 2013.

"We would like to thank our Congressional delegation and the FAA for all their support," Johnson said.

The $19.5 million grant was announced Friday by Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., and Rep. Steve Womack, R-Rogers. It comes on top of a $10 million grant the Department of Transportation awarded last month.

Pryor said the additional funds would allow the airport to accommodate even greater air traffic.