Manhattan Regional Airport’s daily commercial flights are helping local companies like Steel and Pipe Supply, grow their business in a down economy. In just two years of commercial flights by carrier American Eagle, ridership has doubled from 25,074 in 2009 to more than 50,000 this year. To help make this happen, the City of Manhattan secured a $2 million grant from the state to compensate the carrier in case the flights were not full enough. While the city had to dip into it’s local match for a couple of months in the beginning, the entire amount has been paid back to the state as of August of this year. This is a great example of a small market success.
It is stimulating more business at local companies. It is helping local businesses, even Kansas State University, with recruiting. It is helping the city, with an unemployment rate of 6 percent, weather the economic downturn. The nation’s rate rested at 9 percent. Manhattan’s airport has contributed to $22.9 million in economic activity, the creation of 233 jobs and an additional $6.5 million in payroll, according to a study from the Kansas Department of Transportation.
Read the full story here