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Director’s Notes – October 2021

Opportunities are abundant and the sky’s the limit!

In this issue of Aviation View, we explore the dynamic development and new opportunities that have become increasingly more prevalent throughout our expanding industry in recent months, with a very optimistic eye towards the future.

The FAA is investing heavily into U.S. airports, infrastructure, and research in key areas such as the development of next-generation sustainable aircraft technology and drone education and training with several universities that is increasing safety, reducing environmental impacts, and opening new possibilities for increased commerce and logistical support across several industries that rely on aviation for mission-critical operations and success.  Even the communities in the remote areas of Alaska that are only accessible by air will be seeing increases of essential services, supplies, inter-city and inter-village transportation, and daily commuter options.  Ketchikan International Airport in this issue, is vital to these operations and services – linking North and South Alaska for the benefit of their residents, visitors and communities.

As access to international markets across Canada, the Caribbean, Central and South America, Europe, Oceania, and Asia continues to open, we are seeing proactive initiatives by airports, aviation companies, supporting businesses, and their communities being implemented to increase travel routes, cargo operations, and much-needed boosts to local and regional economies.  Lillie Rentz, Airport Manager of Airglades International Airport (AIA), and her team in South-Central Florida, exemplifies these forward-thinking attributes.  Realizing the need for additional routes for imported cargo and perishable goods (flowers, seafood, produce, etc.) coming into the U.S. from Central and South America, the AIA team and their affiliated partners are nearing completion of their $300 million-dollar facility that will not only expedite the transport of international goods, but also dramatically contribute to the economic impact of the region with increases in supply chain logistics and significant job creation.

To accommodate steadily increasing passenger numbers, we are seeing numerous airport projects coming to completion, such as the Terminal expansion with Executive Director Greg Donovan and his team at the Melbourne Orlando International Airport in Florida, due to open in early March of 2022. As well as multiple projects across the five airports of the Riverside County, California airports system, led by County Airports Manager, Angela Jamison, providing access to the world-class golf, spas, and resorts found in this beautiful destination location.

At the Oscoda-Wurtsmith Airport in Michigan’s famed Upper Peninsula, Airport Manager Gary Kellan, is working with aerospace leaders and neighboring airports to usher in spaceport operations of primary deployment to Lower Earth Orbit and Medium Earth Orbit programs.

And if you are looking for an absolute aviation oasis, with robust, commercial MRO capabilities, aerospace, and filming opportunities, then Scott Stark, Air Center Director and Mayor Dennis J. Kintigh, at the Roswell Air Center in Roswell, New Mexico (yes, THAT Roswell) are your go-to points of contact.

Join us, along with our other aviation and aerospace industry colleagues in this issue, as we aim for the stars and launch into the vast reaches of endless opportunity and adventure in 3…2…1…Lift-off!

Paul Payne

Senior Director of Aviation & Research

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