OWENSBORO, Ky. (WFIE) - Cape Air flies to St Louis several times a week out of the Owensboro Airport, but with their contract ending, the airport board is looking at several bids from other airlines to find the best fit. That could mean new flights to Nashville, Chicago, or Atlanta.
“It opens new pathways for new people to discover Owensboro. Nashville and Chicago are two markets that we really target," Dave Kirk with Visit Owensboro said. "So you can imagine what having a direct flight from those places right into our city, what that would do for us.”
Four airlines say they’re ready for takeoff. Cape Air, Air Choice One, Boutique, and Southern will give their plans at a public forum Tuesday.
However, Airport Director Rob Barnett said it’s about more than just where they’ll fly.
“We’re looking for reliability, dependability, connectivity, interline agreements, co-share agreements so the traveler will have a seamless transition once they make it into the hub connecting airport," Barnett said.
Barnett said the public forum will give the community a say in what’s important to them in an airline.
“I’m looking forward to working with each of those airlines and introducing them to the community and allowing them the opportunity to get exposed to Owensboro and all the assets we have to offer," Barnett said.
The public forum starts on Tuesday afternoon at 2:00 at the Chamber of Commerce. About two weeks after that, the airport board will make a recommendation to the Department of Transportation, which will ultimately decide. It won’t be until at least 2020 until the new flights start, after Cape Air’s contract is up.