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Barnstable Municipal Airport 'Worth Millions' to Community
December 14, 2011
A November 2011 report by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) shows the total annual economic impact of Barnstable Municipal Airport on Cape Cod, MA as more than $227 million, including 2,246 jobs supported by the airport with a total payroll just shy of $75 million.
“Local businesses depend on Barnstable Municipal for getting their products to consumers, for quick transportation to meetings, to see clients and even commuting,” said Jessica Sylver, CEO of the Hyannis Area Chamber of Commerce.
“In fact,” she said, “some businesses likely wouldn’t have located here if it wasn’t for the airport. It’s worth millions to our communities.”
One local business depending on the airport is Shepley Wood Products, which supplies lumber and other building materials. Leah Kosnack, marketing director, said the company has a particularly active sales office on the island of Nantucket, although most of the office staff lives on Cape Cod and commutes daily.
“We’ve been sending our people from that airport to the island for more than 20 years,” she said. “Not just sales people, but different managers, service technicians, even the general manager may go there weekly. We rely on Barnstable Municipal Airport to keep our company offices connected with our customers on Nantucket.”
General aviation at Barnstable Municipal is served by fixed base and charter operator Rectrix Aviation. “We offer catering, fueling and lots of special services,” said Phil Geraci, general manager of Rectrix. “We’re in a well-known resort area, so traffic varies with the season, but I’d say the mix is probably 70 percent resort travel and 30 percent other business aircraft.”
“We don’t have many large companies here, mostly smaller businesses that would rather use their own airplanes than conform to an airline’s schedule,” he added. “And we have many visitors who own mega-complexes here, and they’re always bringing in friends who are manufacturers, inventors and the like. New minds bring new thoughts and ideas, and that’s good for any resort area.”
Amelia Earhart once owned stock in this airport, and George H.W. Bush learned to fly here, but Hyannis Chamber CEO Sylver prefers to focus on the present. “It’s what’s happening today that makes the airport so valuable for our communities in the Hyannis area,” she said, pointing to restaurants and other businesses surrounding the airport. She also mentioned rental car agencies, taxi and bus services, vendors and the artists who regularly display their work at the airport.
“Even with three airlines based here, you’ll still find a good collection of jets and other business aircraft on the ramp almost any day of the week, and the businessmen and businesswomen who get here that way are invaluable to the health of our community,” said Sylver.