April 5, 2013

A just-released study of the economic impact of Maryland’s 35 community airports shows $550.7 million in income for businesses dependent on those airports, up almost 15 percent compared with a similar 2006 study. In addition, the report, titled “Maryland: Economic Impact of Airports,” found the airports supported 6,274 jobs.

Both the 2006 and 2012 studies were commissioned by the Maryland Aviation Administration (MAA) and done by aviation consulting firms Landrum and Brown and Martin Associates.

“The fact that business income from activity at these airports rose in Maryland despite the recession is a tribute to the advantages of all general aviation, including business aviation,” said NBAA’s Southeast Regional Representative Harry Houckes. “As the recovery gains strength this year, I expect to see business revenues and all the other economic measures attributable to these airports, and business aviation activity in the state, to rise with it.”

Community airports in Maryland that contributed the most business income benefiting state residents in 2012 were: Martin State (MTN) in Baltimore County, with $224,485,000; Frederick Municipal (FDK) with $110,822,000; Hagerstown Regional Airport (HGR) with $109,643,000; and Salisbury-Ocean City Wicomico Regional Airport with $64,285,000.

In addition to the comprehensive study, individual brochures were created for each airport to use in boosting its visibility in the community. Each brochure contained most of the airport-specific numbers in the overall report.

Both the 2006 and 2012 reports offered four views of the airports’ economic impact, including business revenue, personal income and wages, taxes and total employment. The dollar figures assigned to the first three categories in the 2012 study totaled nearly $1 billion, but the report writers emphasized that the dollar figures were not necessarily additive.

“The impact of an airport… cannot be reduced to a single number,” they said.

“In addition to BWI… the state’s other 35 public-use airports are excellent facilities,” said Jonathan Dean, communications manager for MAA. “From the mountains of western Maryland to the Eastern Shore, these airports allow companies with business aircraft to reach their Maryland customers and potential customers”