New York to spend $37.5 million on LaGuardia Airport flood defenses

Grounds crews prepare a plane for flight at LaGuardia Airport Friday, Feb. 8, 2013, in New York. Most airlines were giving up on flying in and out of New York, Boston and other airports in the American Northeast on Friday as a massive storm threatened to dump up to a meter of snow in some parts.  (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
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Grounds crews prepare a plane for flight at LaGuardia Airport Friday, Feb. 8, 2013, in New York. Most airlines were giving up on flying in and out of New York, Boston and other airports in the American Northeast on Friday as a massive storm threatened to dump up to a meter of snow in some parts. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

NEW YORK (Reuters) - New York State plans to spend $37.5 million on flood barriers and improved drainage at LaGuardia Airport, Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Sunday, a little more than a year after flooding caused by Hurricane Sandy closed the facility for three days.

Work has already begun on the projects, which include building barriers around the airport's electrical systems, expanding the airfield's drainage network and improving the airport's back-up generators.

About $28 million of the project's cost is expected to be covered by federal funds set aside for disaster-mitigation efforts by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which runs the areas airports, Cuomo's office said in a statement.

LaGuardia Airport sits on the north shore of Queens in New York City, abutting the East River's Flushing Bay.

(Reporting by Jonathan Allen; Editing by Scott Malone and Leslie Gevirtz)