Airports have a strong economic impact on neighboring communities, cities and in some cases, regions.
That impact, obviously, will vary depending on the size of the community and the size of the airport that serves that community.
Larger airports, such as Tulsa International, provide a greater economic impact for Tulsa and surrounding areas than smaller, regional airports.
But those regional airports, including McAlester Regional Airport, have definite economic impact and potential for additional economic development.
Construction is nearly finished on a $4 million project at McAlester Regional. Work is expected to be complete around the end of April.
Regional airports create jobs on site.
Regional airports also facilitate job creation in surrounding areas. It’s easier to spot job creation surrounding larger airports. There are hotels, car rental agencies, and restaurants, for example.
There are other jobs that are made possible by airports. Flight schools and skydiving companies are among the kinds of businesses that use airports.
Most people fully understand the role of an airport in transportation of people. Sometimes we overlook the role airports play in moving goods.
Airports bring in goods that are needed as part of the construction process of other goods. Then airports move those manufactured goods all around the country.
For businesses that want to move goods around the country or the world, airports are an important part of the process.
Business owners look for transportation options, including access to major highways, railroads, airports, and, in some cases, waterways.
McAlester Regional Airport is critical to potential economic growth in our area.
Upgrading and maintaining the airport has the potential to play big dividends later.
McAlester Regional Airport could be the key factor in distribution of goods for the next potential manufacturer.
Spending money now to renovate McAlester Regional Airport will help city and county officials sell businesses on our community.
Taking advantage of federal assistance for the project can pay big dividends later.