Tallahassee International Airport Sees Growth in 2015

Tallahassee International Airport
Posted at 6:00 PM, Dec 15, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-15 18:00:00-05

TALLAHASSEE, FL (WTXL) -- The city will be ending the 2014-15 fiscal year with a $17.6 million surplus, and the biggest growth is coming from the fund paying for the airport.

As the year comes to an end, Tallahassee International Airport is looking to build off a strong 2015. The airport is in the midst of a major renovation, and out of all the city funds, the Aviation Fund earned the biggest surplus.

"Commissioner Maddox and I, last year, were able to reduce the parking rate structure at the airport to provide a benefit to our customers, while at the same time, we've been able to negotiate some really, really good lease negotiations for the businesses that utilize the airport," said aviation director Chris Curry.

That includes a 20-year lease with the Federal Aviation Administration and new contracts with Uber.

"Last year, we also became a debt-free airport, which is not something that most airports can say," Curry said.

Curry said by the end of the year, the total number of passengers will be down about one percent compared to 2014. He said that's because fuel prices have been falling.

"I think the airline ticket prices have lagged behind the actual fuel costs for automobiles, so I think based on Tallahassee's location, that people have opted to drive, because we're so close to many major cities," Curry said.

The terminal renovation should wrap up next year, giving travelers more incentive to fly.

Curry said the airport is campaigning to bring United Airlines and JetBlue to Tallahassee, meaning more destinations and more competitive pricing to travelers.