Activity Down At Airport Last Year

March 25, 2002
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GRAND RAPIDS — Both passenger and cargo activity were down at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport (GFIA) in 2001 from the previous year. But freight shipments at the airport were up slightly last year from 2000.

Passenger travel declined after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11. Still, more than 1.8 million air travelers used GFIA last year, meaning that passenger activity was down only 4 percent from the good flying year of 2000.

The recession, along with changes in how airmail is handled at the airport, brought the overall cargo numbers down by nearly 12 percent from last year. The biggest culprit for the lower cargo activity was a 42 percent fall in airmail last year from 2000. Freight shipments rose by 2 percent over the year.

The following chart compares the number of airline passengers and pounds of airmail and freight activity at the airport for the past two years. The cargo total is a sum of the mail and freight totals.

Activity                                  2000                  2001         % Change      
                                                                                          

 2000-2001

Outgoing Passengers            968,000              921.694          -4.81%

Incoming Passengers            936,971               907,560          -3.14%

Passenger Totals               1,905,236            1,829,254          -3.99%

Outgoing Mail                 10,011,361            5,966,025        -40.41%

Incoming Mail                  13,602,298            7,624,423        -43.95%

Mail Totals                      23,613,659          13,590,448        -42.45%

Outgoing Freight            24,063,943           24,233,655        +0.71%

Incoming Freight            27,063,601            28,062,640       +3.69%

Freight Totals                  51,127,544            52,296,295       +2.29%

Cargo Totals                     74,741,203            65,886,743      -11.85%

Source: Gerald R. Ford International Airport, January 2002

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