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Concord Regional Airport control tower funding to be discontinued by FAA
Thursday, March 07, 2013

CONCORD – Yesterday, the City of Concord received official notification from the Federal Aviation Administration that the contract tower program at Concord Regional Airport would be discontinued in the near future. This information does not come as a surprise but is still unsettling in its potential impact. The economic impact to our community could be significant. In 2012, Concord Regional had a total of 59,811 operations (landings and take offs) with 3959 of those being commercial operations. The most recent statistics from 2011 show those commercial flights had 10,961 enplanements (passengers boarding). Concord Regional is part of the tenth busiest airspace in the country.
Economic impact could be realized by the high probability of losing all 737 charter flights, almost all of which involve NASCAR race teams. In addition some tenants, including major race teams, have operating restrictions that only allow them to use tower controlled airports. Some customers may choose to take their business elsewhere because of the decrease in customer service provided by a tower. Many businesses have indicated they located in our community due to our Airport, part of which is the air traffic control tower service. Safety is always the number one priority but an airport without a tower has an obviously different safety environment as one with a tower. 
Our airport will remain open with or without a tower. Currently, options are being considered to keep our tower open on a short term basis without FAA support with long range alternatives being considered.
As a City, we are reaching out to our customers and local partners for support in our conversations with Federal elected officials. It is our belief the proposed action to end our contract tower program will have a broad impact on jobs and our local economy if customers are lost.
Aviation Director Rick Cloutier is available for comment at and 704-920-5912.

Peter L. Franzese
Public Affairs and Projects Manager
Phone: 704-920-5210

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