SCHUMER TO SOUTHWEST AIRLINES: ADD FLIGHTS FROM STEWART AIRPORT, DIRECT FLIGHT FROM NEWBURGH TO BALTIMORE - WOULD BOOST ECONOMY, FILL DEMAND
Southwest Currently Does Not Serve Stewart, Forcing Residents to Travel to Albany for Their Low-cost, Direct FlightsNew Stewart-Baltimore Flight Would Meet High Demand, Lower Consumer Costs, Give Better Air Service to RegionSchumer: As Southwest Airlines Looks at New York it Should Fill the Sky-High Demand for a Newburgh-Baltimore Flight
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As the airline begins to expand its service in New York and explores service from LaGuardia, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today urged Southwest Airlines to add flights to Stewart International Airport (SWF), including a direct flight to BaltimoreWashington International Airport (BWI). In a personal call to Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly, Schumer said Stewart Airport's highquality infrastructure is ready to support an increase in capacity. The senator also touted the region's high demand from business and leisure travelers for a lowcost flight to Baltimore and the DC metro region.
"There is need and demand for Southwest Airlines to add a flight from StewartNewburgh to Baltimore," Schumer said. "The Hudson Valley is filled with business and leisure travelers who could use a lowcost, easy flight to Baltimore and Washington, DC. Adding this flight would not only mean more affordable fares for local passengers but could also mean economic growth for the region."
Southwest flies from Albany to BaltimoreWashington International Airport, Orlando, and Las Vegas but does not currently service Stewart Airport. Hudson Valley residents have long been anxious to secure more direct service to Baltimore and other large hubs.
In an effort to bring Hudson Valley residents a reliable, lowcost flight to Baltimore and connections to the rest of the Southwest Airlines network , Senator Schumer is urging the low cost carrier to consider adding service between SWF and BWI.
Schumer outlined in his call the benefits both Southwest Airlines and the Hudson Valley Region would reap if the company added the flight. Schumer pointed to Stewart International Airport's topnotch infrastructure as ready to support an increase in capacity, as well as a high demand in the region for the flight. Schumer said Stewart International Airport has a history of growth over the years and that despite the temporary decline in air passenger numbers, longterm capital commitments from the Port Authority will only increase passenger numbers in the years to come.
"The long term prospects for Stewart Airport remain bright; if you offer the service, they will come," said Schumer.
Additionally, Stewart is an attractive airport for Southwest to consider expanding service to, specifically service to Southwest's larger hub airports, said Schumer. Stewart Airport does not currently have a flight to the D.C. metro region, and both business and leisure travelers from the Hudson Valley and New York City regions would benefit from an affordable StewarttoBaltimore flight.
Schumer also pledged to continue to fight for federal funds for the airport. Recently there has been an infusion of federal and state support into the Hudson Valley Region's aviation infrastructure. This summer, the U.S. Department of Transportation awarded the airport with $1.2 million in federal funding to support replacement of cables and circuits for navigational aid equipment at the airport. Schumer has also been leading the effort to establish a direct rail connection to the airport and a oneseat ride from Manhattan that will yield additional passenger numbers.
Schumer added, "The Hudson Valley Region enjoys a widespread base of business and leisure travelers, more and more of whom are expressing the desire to expand their travel opportunities to Baltimore as well as other destinations. I have worked hard to secure federal funding for Stewart Airport and I will continue to do so."
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