Muskegon Airport Traffic Rises
Nearly 67,000 people used
"Four percent is 4 percent. It's not huge, but for us it's hopefully a sign of things to come and a trend for the future," airport Manager Marty Piette said.
Piette credits the increased volume in 2004 in part to a fourth daily round-trip flight Midwest Connect added between Muskegon and Milwaukee. The additional flight helped to lift Midwest Connect to a 23 percent increase in passenger volume, to 18,482.
Northwest Airlines, by far the airport's largest carrier, experienced flat passenger traffic at
Northwest Airlines' passenger count was flat despite the addition of jet service for a single daily flight from June to January. The airport is awaiting financial results from the one-year pilot program for jet service before negotiating with Northwest Airlines to get the jet back for 2005.
The jet, used during the first flight out of
An improving economy also helped to boost overall passenger traffic at the airport, as did increased marketing efforts, he said.
The increase in 2004 passenger traffic comes as airport administrators are trying to build volume to lure airlines and encourage existing carriers to implement service upgrades. The move by airlines in the last decade to regional hubs where passengers catch connecting flights tended to hurt smaller airports, Piette said.