By Mike M. Ahlers
and Rene Marsh
updated 6:02 PM EDT, Fri March 22, 2013
Frederick, Maryland (CNN)
-- The Federal Aviation Administration on Friday told 149 regional airports across the country it would begin closing their air traffic control towers in April, but said it would spare another 40 towers that had been on the chopping block.
The agency said the cuts are necessary to help meet $637 million in forced spending cuts.
The tower closures will begin April 7 and will be phased in over four weeks, FAA Chief Operating Officer David Grizzle said in a memo obtained by CNN. Some towers were spared after the FAA considered appeals from towers, and consulted with the departments of defense and homeland security.
Among those to be closed are towers at regional airports in Frederick, Maryland, and near St. Petersburg, Florida, that were built with federal stimulus money and have been open less than a year.
Read the full list of tower closures