“We are going to start out small with the commuter jets, and then start growing with the vacation packages and hopefully keep expanding our industrial base,” Sorrell says.
During the transition, says Kurtz, expectatations by some for immediate air service may have been unrealistic. “We really needed to build the facility, but we should have tempered the expectations about how quickly we’d have more than our commuter airline here,” she says.
CommutAir, working with a Continental Airlines connection, operates the same amount of service as it did at the Clinton County Airport, using B1900s. Sorrell says they offer some four flights per day; passenger services have been terminated on Wednesdays to try and fill more seats.
Says Sorrell, “The engineers and airport professional designers should have had a better relationship with outside agencies such as DHS and TSA (Transportation Security Administration). We’re finding out now that there are requirements that weren’t built into the building, and at the time when they initially designed the terminal they weren’t a requirement.
“It’s to the point where we are brand new, we just opened; and we’re already making modifications to support TSA requirements,” Sorrell says.
“We’re trying to [incorporate] them in the design of the building. We need security, but I don’t want wires hanging out outside of these brand new walls.” Sorrell notes that the airport will be adding 300-plus square feet of space for a TSA training room that was not initially designed.
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