Support voiced for flights to New York

June 24, 2003|by SCOTT BUTKI

The Hagerstown Regional Airport has received "pretty amazing" feedback from people in the Tri-State area interested in taking direct flights to north of New York City, Airport Business Development Manager Greg Larsen said Monday.

The airport began an advertising campaign in April seeking feedback from the public on the matter of direct flights to New York. By the end of the first day, Larsen said, he received 10 phone calls indicating support for the flights and no negative responses.

In all, the airport has received 50 to 60 calls from people expressing support for the service, he said.

"We are very pleased with what we have seen there," he said.

The airport has said that whether direct flights are offered depends on the extent of demand from area residents and the business community.


Some in the banking and printing industries have indicated they would be interested in the direct flights, Larsen said.

In addition, he said, "We have a large community of transplanted New Yorkers throughout the area."

If the proposal proceeds, as Larsen said he thinks it will, the airport will negotiate with an airline to provide the flights, he said.

But, he said, "We still need to mutually agree that it is a sound enough project to embark on."

A trip that normally takes about five hours by train or by car would be about 40 minutes by air, Larsen said. Passengers would have to find their own transportation from White Plains to Manhattan, which is about a 40-minute drive, Larsen said.

Larsen said people now fly from Hagerstown to Baltimore and either connect with another flight or take a train to New York City.

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