Nov. 25, 2015
The Rhode Island Airport Corp. (RIAC), which operates the state’s largest commercial airport, T. F. Green Airport (PVD) in Warwick, along with Rhode Island’s five general aviation airports, is stepping up its efforts to attract business aviation to its facilities, according to corporation officials.
Kelly Fredericks, RIAC’s president and chief executive officer, said RIAC’s efforts to draw more business aircraft are consistent with the initiatives being promoted by the state general assembly and Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo. Those efforts have also received a boost from recent economic impact studies, which demonstrate “the significant nature of corporate aviation aircraft at all of our facilities,” he said.
“We’re uniquely situated in such close proximity to Boston, New York that we can become a more convenient, more accessible and less costly alternative than going directly into some of the corporate markets,” Fredericks said. “We’re hoping that translates into more business activity.”
- At PVD, Northstar Aviation recently completed a multi-million-dollar renovation of its existing facility in order to better service all sizes of business aircraft.
- At North Central State Airport (SFZ) in Smithfield, RIAC made a number of infrastructure improvements to better facilitate large business-aircraft operations. The airport offers a 22,000-square-foot heated hangar and office space.
- Quonset State Airport (OQU) in North Kingstown, with a 7,500-foot runway and a full-service fixed-based operator, provides an alternative for business aircraft intending to reach Rhode Island’s Newport and South County areas.
- At Newport State Airport (UUU) in Middletown, RIAC now offers Jet A fuel for business helicopters and cabin-class aircraft.
- Westerly State Airport (WST) in Westerly, is developing a plan to attract more business aircraft traffic.
Dean Saucier, NBAA’s Northeast regional representative, welcomed RIAC’s support for business aviation.
“It’s gratifying to see a state invest in its general aviation airports and understand and appreciate the economic and jobs benefits that general aviation offers,” Saucier said.