U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that airports in Bloomington-Normal, Springfield and Champaign-Urbana have received a total of $1,250,000 in grants to grow new air service between these central Illinois airports and the East Coast.
Today’s grants were awarded through the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)’s Small Community Air Service Development Program which was established by Congress in 2002 to help small, underserved airports around the country improve their air service.
“Having access to reliable air service is essential to growing businesses that create jobs in Illinois,” said Durbin. “Today’s investment will support new air service to three important airports in Central Illinois and hopefully lead to more students, families and businesses taking advantage of these new routes.”
The following investments in Central Illinois air service were made under this announcement:
• Central Illinois Regional Airport, Bloomington-Normal: $500,000 in funding to launch new service from the Central Illinois Regional Airport to Washington, D.C., or New York. Bloomington-Normal has a large business and educational base, and there is currently no nonstop service to any city in the northeast, so the proposed service would materially benefit the traveling public;
• Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport, Springfield: $250,000 in funding for ground handling and a marketing program to support the new low-cost air service to Florida, Myrtle Beach, Las Vegas, and/or Phoenix that the community supports; and
• University of Illinois Willard Airport, Champaign-Urbana: $500,000 in funding for revenue guarantee and marketing support for new air service to Washington Dulles International Airport.