“ELM Noted in State’s Economic Impact Study”
Monday, July 11, 2011
Big Flats- In a recently released report by the New York State Department of Transportation, the Elmira Corning Regional Airport (ELM) was recognized as third in the State in annual economic activity attributable to aviation. In addition, ELM was one of only three airports from 2007 to 2009 which showed an increase in enplanements.
The study showed that the 18 airline public-use airports in New York State helped generate over $50 billion in economic activity, which is far greater than the $610 million of public investment in capital development at New York airports. ELM generated $1.54 billion of the total with JFK International and LaGuardia comprising $42 billion or 84% of the state’s economic impact.
Sikorsky Military Completions Center, which manufactures and assembles military helicopters on the grounds of the airport is responsible for $1.28 billion of ELM’s total according to the study. There are a total of 90 public-use airports in New York. Of those 18 have scheduled airline passenger service.
“Chemung County recognized many years ago that development and investment in transportation infrastructure would encourage the economic vitality of the region,” said Tom Santulli, Chemung County Executive. “Today we have a modern airport located on I-86 and near I-99 and near rail lines. The multi-modal hub this created gives us strength in attracting business to the region such as Sikorsky, Synthes, DeMets, and the natural gas industry.”
ELM was also noted, along with the Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport and the Westchester County Airport, as the only airports in New York State to have gained enplanements in 2009. The study was conducted during a period of global economic recession. Statewide, overall airline passenger traffic declined 6.9% during this period. Since 2009, ELM has continued to see increases in enplanements with 2010 exceeding all previous years and 2011 currently tracking at 26% above year to date figures from 2010.
The study noted that in addition to supporting aviation businesses and manufacturers such as Sikorsky, factors which also contribute to boosting an airports economic impact include: airport branding, marketing and promotion; air service improvements; and partnerships with other public and private agencies and institutions. Airport Manager, Ann Crook has always seen these areas as priorities.
“We have really focused on developing and maintaining strategic alliances over the past several years. By partnering with our tourism partners; Chemung County Chamber of Commerce, Corning Museum of Glass, Rockwell Museum of Western Art, Watkins Glen International, National Soaring Museum and others; we have developed a sense of place in the terminal which makes visitors aware of the beauty and excitement that our region offers and encourages people traveling here on business to return for pleasure. We also work very closely with Southern Tier Economic Growth, the Chemung County and Corning Area Chambers, and Corning Inc. on air service development efforts.”
The airport has seen many air service improvements over the years as well as significant infrastructure upgrades including the expansion of the runway, as well as terminal and parking lot enhancements. The addition of low-cost carrier Allegiant Air has saved ELM passengers significant air fare dollars and has made tourist locations more accessible.
In addition to Allegiant, US Airways and Delta also provide service out of the Elmira Corning Regional Airport.