Burlington International Airport
|Burlington International Airport|
|USGS aerial image, 1995|
|IATA: BTV – ICAO: KBTV – FAA LID: BTV|
|Owner||City of Burlington|
|Operator||Burlington Airport Commission|
|Location||South Burlington, Vermont|
|Elevation AMSL||335 ft / 102 m|
|Sources: FAA and airport website|
Burlington International Airport (IATA: BTV, ICAO: KBTV, FAA LID: BTV) is a joint-use civil-military airport in Chittenden County, Vermont, United States. It is owned by the City of Burlington. The airport is located in South Burlington, three nautical miles (6 km) east of the central business district of Burlington.
As per Federal Aviation Administration records, the airport had 640,790 passenger boardings (enplanements) in calendar year 2010, a decrease of 8.5% from the 700,592 enplanements in 2009. This airport is included in the FAA's National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015, which categorized it as a primary commercial service airport (more than 10,000 enplanements per year).
On Saturday, August 14, 1920, the first aircraft landed at what became the Burlington Municipal Airport. It had been a 72 acres (29.1 ha) cornfield. Airport developers took a lease on the land for one year for $100.
With the onset of the Second World War, the United States Government created a Defense Zone extending inland 150 miles (240 km) from the coastline, where private aircraft were restricted from operating. Burlington Municipal Airport was located approximately 3 miles (4.8 km) outside of the Defense Zone, allowing it to conduct pilot training both locally and from other airports located within the restricted zone, one such example being Boston’s Logan Airport. Due to increased demand, the Burlington Municipal Airport was noted as being the busiest airport in the world on both August 14, 1942 and February 11, 1943, with 662 and 793 landings respectively.
On February 24, 1969, the Board of Aldermen voted to change the airports title from “municipal” to “international” as a means of re-branding the airport and steering it away from the perceptions of it being a small, community-based facility.
On May 11, 1971 Burlington voters approved a $1.25 Million bond for a new 40,000-sq/ft terminal. This terminal opened October 7, 1973.
From 2000 to 2008, the airport experienced an increase in growth and service. Since 2000, $24 million in renovations and expansion has been invested at Burlington. In 2008, the airport authority completed a $15 million expansion project which added five gates — four with boarding bridges — and customer service areas, in addition to a 948-space parking garage and an elevated connected walkway.
The airport set a local record in July 2008 when 79,154 passengers flew from Burlington, the first time the figure has crossed 70,000.
BTV enplaned over 759,000 people in 2008, a 7.3% increase from 2007.
Burlington International Airport serves the Burlington-South Burlington metropolitan area, which contained over 206,000 residents as of 2006 U.S. Census estimates. Due to the relatively small size of the market, airlines mostly fly regional airliners on their Burlington routes. Among these are Bombardier CRJ-200 and CRJ-700 and Embraer ERJ-145 regional jets operated by most of the major carriers as well as turboprop powered Bombardier Q400 aircraft flown by Porter Airlines. JetBlue Airways notably flies some of the only daily flights using smaller mainline airliners, it offers 4-5 flights each day to John F. Kennedy International Airport aboard medium sized Embraer E-190 jets however in the busier summer months JetBlue often substitutes the E-190 with a larger Airbus A320. currently the largest scheduled passenger plane to fly out of Burlington is a MD-88 seasonally flown by Delta Air Lines which operates a single daily fight to Atlanta during the summer. This seasonal service was only recently resumed in 2013 and will continue each summer, Atlanta is also the farthest destination served by any airline out of BTV.
In 2008, Big Sky Airlines stopped flying the Boston route. Management has been searching for a replacement for this important route, Cape Air has shown considerable interest in establishing this route using their Cessna 402s, currently the closest Boston-served destination by Cape Air to Burlington is Rutland, VT. More recently the Alaska based airline Penair has also shown some interest in Boston-Burlington Flights but is currently utilizing the nearby Plattsburgh International Airport in New York for this route.
The airport has used natural resources such as marble and granite, and maple for interior decoration, intended to give the airport a "Vermont Feel". In 2009, the airport had fifteen gates serving seven airlines.
On February 3, 2010 it was announced that AirTran Airways would not be returning to Burlington. Service started in early 2009 on Boeing 717 aircraft operating 55 minute flights from Baltimore, but after only 6 months AirTran demoted BTV to seasonal service, operating only during the summer months. AirTran planned on resuming service in the spring of 2010, but due to various reasons not specified they did not. AirTran service lasted for 8 months in 2009. Southwest Airlines has indicated that it may pick up the route at some point on its Boeing 737 jets.
In 2010, a city-owned cable provider was unable to pay the city of Burlington $17 million it owed. As a result, Moody's downrated the debt for the city. Moody's also downrated the credit rating for the airport, as well. Although voters approved a $21.5 million bond for airport expansion, this downgrade made borrowing the money too expensive. The airport therefore borrowed $7.5 million from the city for a $14.5 million garage expansion. In June 2011, the city asked for the money back.
The airport was in the process of expanding the parking garage by adding two more levels on the north end. This would have given it a total of 2700 parking spaces. This project was later completed in early 2012. The airport finished renovating the upper concourses bathrooms in late 2013.
Canceled Air Show
In September 2012 it was announced to the public that the Vermont Air National Guard Charitable Foundation was planning to host an Air Show in Burlington, the first such event at this location to take place in years.
The show itself and involvement of the V-ANGCF was approved in November with the event dubbed "Wings over Vermont", a website was constructed and it was stated that rather than taking place at the airport, the show would instead be performed over the waterfront at Lake Champlain. The show was scheduled for August 4th and 5th, 2013. participating aircraft and performers were to stage at Burlington International. Shortly after it was announced that the famed USAF Thunderbirds would be headlining the show. Although many people locally and in surrounding states highly anticipated the event, some Vermonters disagreed about the event believing that it was a waste of money on fuel and aircraft maintenance and caused unnecessary air pollution. Many protests erupted throughout the town after this, local political officials also argued against the air show but the governor of Vermont, Peter Shumlin dismissed these protests stating that the true purpose of the show was to honor the work and achievements of the Burlington Air National Guard and all the men and women of the US armed forces.
Updates in January-February 2013 included the involvement of the Aeroshell Aerobatic Team, Red Bull Skydiving Team, and the presumed flyovers of locally based 158th fighter wing F-16s. Air Show Announcer Rob Reider and renowned aerobatic pilots Sean D. Tucker and Kirby Chambliss were also attached to the event. Preparations had began at the waterfront to host the thousands of spectators expected to attend.
To the shock of air show fans around the world the entire "Wings over Vermont" event was canceled officially on March 13th, 2013 in a statement that was announced on the website as well as the headlines and the 2013 Air Show Schedule. The cancellation had nothing to do with political disagreement or local protesting but the 2013 Sequester budget cuts in Congress. Burlington was one of dozens of air shows to be canceled that year when all aviation support to public events by the US military was cut. Preparations at the Burlington waterfront have ceased and as of now no further information regarding air shows at Burlington in upcoming years has been released.
In the Future
The Airport has seen more passengers using its facilities since the depression of 2008. This has caught the attention of American Airlines which is looking to expand its North-Eastern presence. Other airlines such as Cape Air and Pen Air have also expressed interest of running flights from Burlington to Boston Logan Airport. Other plans include adding a Customs point to the airport, eliminating the requirement to clear customs at the Cargo Terminal.
Facilities and aircraft
Burlington International Airport covers an area of 942 acres (381 ha) at an elevation of 335 feet (102 m) above mean sea level. It has two runways: 15/33 is 8,320 by 150 feet (2,536 x 46 m) with an asphalt and concrete surface; 1/19 is 3,611 by 75 feet (1,101 x 23 m) with an asphalt surface.
As a Burlington-owned facility, the airport purchases its electricity from the city-owned utility.
In 2009, the Airport Authority sought $45 million for an expansion. If approved by Burlington city voters; it would provide 1,400 additional parking space to add onto the current 3 story, 2,100 spaces garage. It would hold 3,500 cars within 5 stories, with a completion date of late 2010 or early 2011. It was later completed in late 2011 though the airport had to remove half of the proposed parking spaces, leaving the parking lot looking like a backwards L if you look at it from the terminal.
For the 12-month period ending April 30, 2010, the airport had 72,189 aircraft operations, an average of 197 per day: 47% general aviation, 26% air taxi, 16% scheduled commercial, and 11% military. At that time there were 101 aircraft based at this airport: 50% single-engine, 14% multi-engine, 8% jet, 1% helicopter, and 28% military.
Two military installations are based there. The first is Burlington Air National Guard Base, which includes the 158th Fighter Wing (158 FW), an Air Combat Command (ACC)-gained unit of the Vermont Air National Guard, flying the F-16C Fighting Falcon. The 158 FW consists of approximately 1000 Air National Guard personnel, both full-time Active Guard and Reserve (AGR) and Air Reserve Technician (ART) personnel and traditional part-time Air National Guardsmen.
The second installation is an Army Aviation Support Facility (AASF) of the Vermont Army National Guard, supporting the 1st Battalion, 103d Aviation Regiment and the 86th Medical Company (Air Ambulance).
Airlines and destinations
BTV has flights to airline hubs in the East and Midwest.
The following airlines offer scheduled passenger service at Burlington Airport:
|1||New York, NY||JFK||120,000||JetBlue Airways|
|2||Philadelphia, PA||PHL||87,000||US Airways|
|3||Chicago, IL||ORD||72,000||United Airlines|
|4||Washington, DC (National)||DCA||69,000||US Airways|
|5||Newark, NJ||EWR||64,000||United Airlines|
|6||New York, NY||LGA||56,000||Delta Air Lines|
|7||Detroit, MI||DTW||52,000||Delta Air Lines|
|8||Washington, DC (Dulles)||IAD||42,000||United Airlines|
|9||Cleveland, OH||CLE||14,000||United Airlines|
|10||Atlanta, GA||ATL||11,000||Delta Air Lines|
Air cargo service
Both major commercial parcel carriers (UPS Airlines and FedEx Express) fly into BTV, providing service for much of northern Vermont. UPS uses Wiggins Airways to ferry packages between Burlington and larger cargo hubs.
FedEx Express in fact operates the largest aircraft to frequently utilize Burlington International Airport. Cargo is flown in from the company's "Super-hub" in Memphis, Tennessee aboard medium ranged Boeing 757-200 aircraft (up until 2011 this was done by aging Boeing 727-200s before these aircraft were replaced by the newer, more versatile 757s). Upon arriving from Memphis some of the cargo is unloaded from the 757 distributed to smaller propeller driven Cessna 208Bs operated by Wiggins Airways and flown to closer destinations such as Portland, ME and Syracuse, NY.
Royal Air Freight mainly flies small turbo-prop King Air and Embraer type aircraft to and from burlington, Pontiac, and the cargo carriers HQ at Newark Liberty International Airport.
UPS flies exclusive connection flights with aircraft from Wiggins Airways to airports in the Northeast with Cessna 208s and small jet aircraft.
|FedEx Express||Memphis, Portland (ME), Syracuse|
|Royal Air Freight||Pontiac (MI), Newark|
|UPS Airlines operated by Wiggins Airways||Bangor, Poughkeepsie, Manchester (NH), Rutland|
- FAA Airport Master Record for BTV ( PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective August 25, 2011.
- Burlington International Airport, official site
- "Primary, Non-primary Commercial Service, and General Aviation Airports (by State)" (PDF, 189 KB). CY 2010 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2011.
- "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF, 2.03 MB). 2011–2015 National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2010.
- Tabor, James M., Burlington International Airport: A History 1920-2010, Transcontinental Metrolitho, Inc., 2010
- Brian, Searles (September 1, 2010). Burlington International Airport Burlington, Vermont Airport Emergency Plan (AEP) Class I Airport. University of Vermont.
- McLean, Dan (August 12, 2008). "Burlington's Airport Reports Record July". Burlington Free Press.
- "Burlington Airport Sets Record for Boardings". The Boston Globe. January 21, 2009. Retrieved January 21, 2009.[dead link]
- Mclean, Dan (February 8, 2010). "Vermont Airport Faces Competition for Flights". Burlington Free Press (Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today (reprint)). pp. 22A. Retrieved February 8, 2010.[dead link]
- "Airport Director: AirTran Will Not Return in 2010". Burlington Free Press (Burlington, Vermont). February 3, 2010.[dead link]
- Briggs, John (August 10, 2010). "Burns Leaving Burlington Telecom". Burlington Free Press (Burlington, Vermont). pp. 1A, 5A.[dead link]
- "This Is Your Good Government at Work". Burlington Free Press (Burlington, Vermont). June 19, 2011. pp. 4B.
- "Airport / FBO Information". FltPlan.com. Retrieved 30 April 2010.
- "South Burlington OKs airport garage expansion". BurlingtonFreePress.com. December 18, 2009. Retrieved 7 January 2010.[dead link]
- Burlington International Airport (BTV) at VTrans Aviation
- Aerial image as of 25 April 1999 from USGS The National Map
- (PDF), effective November 14, 2013
- FAA Terminal Procedures for BTV, effective November 14, 2013
- Resources for this airport: