The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released a recent study called General Aviation Airports: A National Asset. Out of 2,455 airports in the United States, Collin County Regional Airport in McKinney received a new designation in the national category as a reliever airport along with 83 other airports nationally and just eight in Texas. These airports have been recognized for giving their regions access to national and international markets.
“Collin County Regional Airport has been in the international business aviation business for several years. Our US Customs office has witnessed a steady increase in international flights to markets all over the world,” said Airport Director Ken Wiegand. “This study helps solidify our role in the local-regional, national and international economies.”
The FAA conducted the 18-month study to capture the many diverse functions of general aviation (GA) airports like Collin County Regional Airport.Over the last century, GA airports and their commercial counterparts have evolved from unpaved landing strips to aviation hubs. The FAA’s in-depth analysis highlights the pivotal role GA airports play in our society, economy and the entire aviation system.
GA airports can serve many different functions, providing access to flights that provide medical service, search and rescue, disaster relief, aerial firefighting, law enforcement, community access, commercial and industrial activity, flight instruction and air cargo. They provide thousands of landing areas in communities around the world for business aviation that commercial airlines do not serve.
“Being recognized as one of 84 General Aviation Reliever airports in the nation with this capability is rewarding,” said John Wroten, Chairman of the Collin County Airport Development Corporation.
The United States has the largest and most diverse network of airports in the world and General Aviation is a critical component. GA airports relieve congestion, enhance safety and provide safe and secure operational facilities for international business and private air transportation and in 2009 contributed $38.8 billion to the U.S. economy.