Wednesday March 9, 2005
The Louisville Regional Airport Authority officially broke ground today for an aircraft maintenance complex for Chautauqua Airlines. The facility will be the anchor tenant at the Louisville International Commerce Cente, serving as Chautauqua Airlines’ new, permanent facility in Louisville. The facility is expected to generate 300 well–paying jobs in Louisville; the average salary is expected to be more than $34,000 annually.
"I want to thank Chautauqua Airlines for bringing this tremendous economic development opportunity to the greater Louisville area," said Governor Ernie Fletcher. "Three hundred new jobs will have a significant impact on the quality of life for numerous families. The priority of my administration is to provide more opportunity for the workforce of Kentucky."
The maintenance facility will have six bays for a total of more than 60,000 square feet, and will cover approximately 9.85 acres on the west side of Louisville International Airport’s airfield.
"Chautauqua's new maintenance facility is an example of the continued economic payoff that has resulted from our investment in the airport expansion project," said Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson. "We appreciate Chautauqua's commitment to bring quality jobs to Louisville and to be a part of the economic engine at our airport."
Louisville serves as a large crew base for the airline with as many as eight aircraft overnighting in Louisville. Six aircraft will be maintained nightly in this facility.
“The Chautauqua Airlines Maintenance Facility is a major step forward for our airport, and it is yet another success story confirming the foresight and wisdom of our community’s leaders when they initiated the Louisville Airport Improvement Projectproject,” said Phil Lynch, Airport Board Vice Chairman.
“This new Louisville maintenance center, when completed, will support our company’s growing operation. Louisville is an important piece of our regional jet strategy and its convenient location allows us to support three of our four airline partners,” said Warren R. Wilkinson, Vice President of Government Affairs & Corporate Communications for Republic Airways Holdings. “We appreciate the support and cooperation of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, the City of Louisville, Greater Louisville Inc. and the Louisville Regional Airport Authority in making the development of this facility a reality.”
"Louisville has been a player for several years in the airline business, and Chautauqua Airlines’ decision to come here gives us more diversity and solidifies our base within the industry," said Steve Higdon, president and CEO of Greater Louisville Inc. – The Metro Chamber of Commerce. "With its maintenance hangar and flight crews based here at Louisville International Airport, this community will serve as an important base for Chautauqua Airlines."
Chautauqua Airlines, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Republic Airways Holdings, provides regional jet service for USAirways and Delta, and will fly those aircraft to and from Louisville for routine maintenance at the new facility.
Chautauqua Airlines offers scheduled passenger service on more than 700 flights daily to 76 cities in 32 states, the District of Columbia, Canada, and the Bahamas through code sharing agreements with four major U.S. airlines. Chautauqua Airlines currently operates a fleet of 116 Embraer regional jets, including 68 ERJ-145s, 15 ERJ-140s, 17 ERJ-135s and 16 Embraer 170’s. All of its flights are operated under its major airline partner brand, such as American Connection, Delta Connection, United Express and US Airways Express.