Back in January, I wrote a post about the Fayetteville airport that included some polling. The polls are still live, so feel free to vote:
The results so far are pretty clear:
- Overwhelmingly, people in this area would rather fly out of Fayetteville; and
- These same people fly out of other airports at least 50% of the time, often driving to RDU or Charlotte.
This demonstrates an untapped market. People will use the Fayetteville airport if it gets them where they need to go at a reasonable price. And maybe, just maybe, they might pay a little bit more if they could get a cup of Starbucks in a lobby that didn’t make them feel like Elvis was about to get off of the next plane on his way to play the Cumberland County Arena.
But even The King avoided our airport, flying into Pope instead:
Which leads me to the point of this post…
Our airport came back up today when the Observer reported that we’re scaling back our current renovations in a big way. In short, our airport’s not going to be as nice as we had planned. The costs to do it the right way went up about 10 Million dollars, so we’re pulling a minor-league move and scaling it back.
Are we doomed to mediocrity in this town? Sometimes it feels like it.
But maybe it doesn’t have to be this way? Maybe we just need a new vision…
Put on your thinking cap and come with me as we leave the 35th parallel and enter the land of pure imagination:
Yes we can! Imagine that our City will finally create some first-class infrastructure, a 21st-century gateway that will become a regional hub for southeastern North Carolina. All we need to do is pitch in an extra Ten Million Dollars.
Of course, we don’t have the money right now, but we could borrow it! Surely there is a form of financing that cities can use for capital projects like airports that spur economic growth, increase the tax base, and create jobs!? After all, an airport is open to the public and benefits the community as a whole! Perhaps there’s even a University nearby with a school full of smart people that assist cities in doing these types of deals?? Don’t we already know some of these people!?
Now, come back to reality.
This is Fayetteville, after all.