Monday, May 31, 2010

In praise of San Bernardino International Airport...eventually

When Norton Air Force Base was closed, it converted to an entity with the grandiose name of San Bernardino International Airport. If it hadn't been for September 11, this airport could very well have become a passenger-carrying concern. However, the airport can't serve passenger traffic yet, and may not for some time:

The cost to make San Bernardino International Airport passenger ready for airlines has risen to $92.4 million and will likely rise again....

[T]he Inland Valley Development Agency overseeing the redevelopment of the former Norton Air Force Base approved spending another $5.93 million to finish the airport....

[T]he $5.9 million would mainly be used to secure the airport according to TSA standards.

Of course you can build an airport, but will the airlines come? The recent rocky history of Ontario International Airport, where airlines have departed because of low passenger traffic and high airport fees, suggest that there may be challenges. However, the airport is apparently offering incentives to airlines, and the Inland Valley Development Agency will continue to subsidize the airport.

But will that be enough?

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