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Commercial air service to resume

For more than half a century there was scheduled airline service at the Fort Dodge Regional Airport. That ended temporarily on Feb. 1, 2014, when Great Lakes Airlines abruptly suspended its flights to and from Fort Dodge.

Air service will resume on Feb. 23 when Air Choice One adds our airport to its system.

This carrier will offer flights to two major airline hubs – Chicago and St. Louis. That will produce more diverse options than have been available locally since the 1990s. The airline announced the St. Louis flights in October when it was chosen to serve Fort Dodge. Its decision also to serve Chicago from Fort Dodge was made public Dec. 29.

Those commercial flights coupled with the airport’s state-of-the-art facilities for corporate and charter traffic will help keep the region prosperous.

Relatively few communities the size of Fort Dodge can boast of air service that will match what will exist here shortly. This is not simply a matter of convenience for the infrequent traveler. Having good air service is vital to the plans to keep major employers here and attract new ones.

Businesses tend to locate in spots that afford executives and sales representatives, as well as clients and customers, easy access to air travel. It is not an accident that major companies tend to be located close to airports.

Scheduled air service – as well as the airport’s excellent facilities for corporate and charter flights -will give Fort Dodge and other area communities an edge in the increasingly tough competition to keep and attract the companies that can make our economy grow.

The Messenger applauds Air Choice One’s commitment to Fort Dodge. The resumption of scheduled passenger flights at Fort Dodge Regional Airport is very good news for north central Iowa.

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