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02-01-2012 - Airport Authority generates $2 billion per year for local economy

Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority generates $2 billion per year for local economy

(Reno, NV) – The Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority is a powerful economic engine that fuels the local economy with $2 billion per year and much needed jobs, according to an economic impact study announced today by the University of Nevada’s College of Business (UNR).

Dr. Kambiz Raffiee and Brian Bonnefant of UNR spent months analyzing data from both Reno-Tahoe International Airport and Reno-Stead Airport, as well as the local Nevada economy, to produce a study that shows the airports generate $166 million per month and $2 billion per year for the local economy.

In addition to the revenue, the airports also stimulate the economy by generating 22,138 jobs in the state with the highest unemployment in the nation.

“These numbers are a loud and clear signal to business and community leaders in Northern Nevada that the road to recovery may actually be a runway,” Krys Bart, President/CEO of the Reno-Tahoe Airport, said. “Instead of focusing on drive markets for tourism, it’s time to recognize that the airport is this region’s economic driver.”

To underscore the importance of air service to the community, the study also demonstrated that approximately $100,000 is generated each time a Boeing 737 lands at Reno-Tahoe International. Landings by 737s bring $1.2 billion per year to the local economy. Southwest Airlines, which carries 57 percent of the passengers at Reno-Tahoe International, only flies 737 aircraft.

Looking at the impact of one type of aircraft dramatically demonstrates the importance of maintaining and enhancing air service to the region, Bart said. 

“If this region is going to fly again economically, it’s time to get on board with the airport and support air service marketing for both leisure and business traffic,” Bart said. “There are 450 communities around the country with airports that want to steal our flights and our economic impact and those communities enjoy much stronger business and statewide political support than we do.”  

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