Santa Fe Municipal Airport
|Santa Fe Municipal Airport|
|IATA: SAF – ICAO: KSAF – FAA LID: SAF|
|Owner||City of Santa Fe|
|Serves||Santa Fe, New Mexico|
|Elevation AMSL||6,348 ft / 1,935 m|
|Source: Federal Aviation Administration|
The airport had seen an increase in airline flights in recent years, with 43,329 passenger boardings (enplanements) in calendar year 2011 and 47,847 in 2012.  It is in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015, which called it a general aviation airport based on enplanements in 2008, when Santa Fe had no airline service while airport officials awaited federal approval of an environmental impact assessment (the commercial service category requires at least 2,500 per year).
The airport had nonstop and direct Douglas DC-9s to Dallas Love Field (DAL), continuing to Houston, on Texas International Airlines (which previously was TTa, Trans-Texas Airways, flying Douglas DC-9-10s from Santa Fe to Albuquerque, Roswell and Midland/Odessa on a direct route to Dallas), and nonstop to Phoenix, AZ on America West Express Beechcraft 1900Cs operated by Mesa Airlines. TTa and Texas International Convair 600s flew from Santa Fe to Albuquerque and other cities in New Mexico and Texas with many of these flights continuing to Dallas.
Trans World Airlines had a flight a day each way until 1960. TWA flew Lockheed Constellation from Santa Fe direct to Kansas City, Chicago, New York and Boston, and to Albuquerque and Los Angeles. Continental Airlines Vickers Viscounts and DC3s flew from Santa Fe until 1963, direct to Denver, El Paso and Dallas and nonstop to Colorado Springs and Albuquerque. Frontier Airlines (1950-1986) Convair 580s flew nonstop to Denver in the 1960s and direct to Phoenix, Tucson and El Paso.
Later, several commuter airlines flew nonstop to Denver, including Mesa Airlines and Great Lakes Airlines with Beechcraft 1900Cs, and Pioneer Airlines with Beechcraft C99s. Mountain Air Express Dornier 328s flew to Denver and Albuquerque for Western Pacific Airlines.
Period without airlines
In June 2007 the airport was upgraded to Class 1 to allow regional jet flights. The city's government and interested airlines entered negotiations to split the cost of upgrades. In July 2007 Delta Air Lines announced new regional jet flights would commence between Santa Fe and Los Angeles International Airport and Salt Lake City International Airport; this would have been the first regional jets at Santa Fe. All scheduled services, including planned American Eagle flights to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport announced shortly after Delta, were suspended indefinitely pending federal approval of an environmental assessment. Delta and American removed flights to Santa Fe from their schedules and it was unknown if flights would begin.
Resumption of airline service
The completion of the environmental impact statement was announced on February 26, 2009, but neither Delta or American Airlines immediately announced any resumption of their intentions to serve the facility, citing changed economic conditions. On March 12, 2009 the City of Santa Fe announced that American Eagle, the regional affiliate of American Airlines, would begin one daily flight to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) on June 11, 2009. On the same day service began, American Eagle also announced additional service to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) beginning November 19, 2009. These American Eagle flights to DFW and LAX were operated with Embraer ERJ-140 and ERJ-145 regional jet aircraft.
On July 27, 2009 American Eagle announced a second daily flight to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. Service began on November 19, 2009. On December 14, 2009, a third daily flight to Dallas-Fort Worth was announced. Service began on February 11, 2010. However, on June 18, 2010, it was announced that service would temporarily revert to two daily flights to Dallas-Fort Worth in August 2010, with the third flight expected to return in April 2011.
On February 28, 2011, it was announced that the third daily flight to Dallas-Fort Worth would return in April as planned, and that a fourth daily flight would begin in July 2011. The third daily flight operated until November 16, 2011, and the fourth daily flight operated from July 2, 2011 to August 22, 2011. The third daily flight again made a return in April 2012, and the fourth daily flight returned on June 14, 2012.
Currently, American Eagle operates Embraer ERJ-140 and ERJ-145 regional jets on all of its nonstop flights between Santa Fe and Dallas/Ft. Worth (DFW). SkyWest Airlines, operating as American Eagle, initiated nonstop service to Los Angeles (LAX) on November 14, 2012 with Canadair CRJ-200 regional jets and has thus replaced the Embraer regional jet service that was previously operated by American Eagle on the route to LAX.
As of August 2011, the city of Santa Fe was in discussions with Great Lakes Airlines concerning the possible resumption of turboprop passenger service to Denver. Great Lakes then resumed scheduled flights into Santa Fe. On December 1, 2012, Great Lakes initiated nonstop flights to Denver and Clovis, NM with Beechcraft 1900D turboprop aircraft configured with 19 passenger seats. However, on March 15, 2013, Great Lakes announced it would replace the Clovis flights with service to the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX) starting May 1.
On December 19, 2012, it was announced that ExpressJet Airlines, operating as United Express on behalf of United Airlines, would initiate double daily regional jet service to Denver International Airport (DEN) beginning May 1, 2013. Both flights have now commenced and are currently being operated with 50-seat Embraer ERJ-145 regional jet aircraft. These flights comprise the first ever jet service between Santa Fe and Denver.
Potential closure of control tower
On March 1, 2013, it was announced that Santa Fe Municipal Airport may lose funding for operating its control tower due to federal budget cuts, leading to concerns that the airport may lose its commercial airline service. On March 11, 2013, a letter to federal officials was sent by Santa Fe Mayor David Coss to appeal the closure of the control tower. The appeal was rejected and the airport was included on the final list of control tower closures on March 22, 2013.
After initially extending the deadline for closure to June 15, 2013, on May 10 the FAA announced that all federal contract towers previously threatened with closure in 2013 would remain open through September 30, the end of the 2013 fiscal year, using previously unallocated funds in the agency's general budget.  Aviation advocacy groups have asked Congress to extend funding for the towers in FY2014 as well. 
Facilities and aircraft
Santa Fe Municipal Airport covers 2,128 acres (861 ha) at an elevation of 6,348 feet (1,935 m) above mean sea level. It has three asphalt runways: 2/20 is 8,342 by 150 feet (2,543 x 46 m); 15/33 is 6,307 by 100 feet (1,922 x 30 m); 10/28 is 6,300 by 75 feet (1,920 x 23 m).
In 2012 the airport had 65,456 aircraft operations, average 179 per day: 83% general aviation, 9% air taxi, and 8% military. 181 aircraft were then based at this airport: 67% single-engine, 13% multi-engine, 11% jet, 2% helicopter, 1.% glider, 1% ultralight, and 6% military.
Airlines and destinations
The following airlines offer scheduled passenger service:
|American Eagle||Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles|
- FAA Airport Master Record for SAF ( PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective April 5, 2012.
- "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF, 2.03 MB). National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2010.
- "Santa Fe Airport: Flights Delayed as Airlines Wait for Report". SantaFe.com. January 22, 2007. Archived from the original on February 18, 2008. Retrieved March 2, 2008.
- Quick, Bob (February 26, 2009). "FAA clears airport for regional jets". The Santa Fe New Mexican. Retrieved March 3, 2009.
- "American Eagle Airlines Launches Nonstop Jet Service Between Santa Fe, N.M., and Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport". American Eagle Airlines. PR Newswire. June 11, 2009. Retrieved December 31, 2009.
- "American Eagle Airlines Boosts Service From Dallas/Fort Worth to Santa Fe, N.M. Beginning Feb. 11, 2010". American Eagle Airlines. PR Newswire. 14 December 2009. Retrieved 31 December 2009.
- "American Eagle To Cut One Flight to Dallas". ABQ Journal. ABQ Journal. June 18, 2010. Retrieved June 19, 2010.
- Quick, Bob (February 28, 2011). "American Eagle to add connections to Dallas-Fort Worth". The Santa Fe New Mexican. Retrieved March 1, 2011.
- "American Eagle adds 4th Santa Fe-DFW flight". KSWO. April 3, 2012. Retrieved April 5, 2012.
- "Santa Fe, NM - Official Website - Commercial Airlines". Retrieved January 16, 2012.
- "Airline plans flights between Santa Fe, Phoenix". Santa Fe New Mexican. March 15, 2013. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
- "United to starts flights between Santa Fe, Denver". KGWN-TV. December 19, 2012. Retrieved December 30, 2012.
- "Federal budget cuts could force closure of Santa Fe airport’s control tower". Santa Fe New Mexican. March 1, 2013. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
- "Santa Fe appeals tower closing". KFDA-TV. March 11, 2013. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
- "FAA to close 149 air traffic towers, including Santa Fe and Double Eagle II". KOB-TV. March 22, 2013. Retrieved March 22, 2013.
- Santa Fe Municipal Airport Official City of Santa Fe web page for airport.
- The Aviation Association of Santa Fe Non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the airport and educating the public about the airport.
- Santa Fe Air Center Commercial operator providing airline support and fuel and services for private aircraft.
- Santa Fe Aero Services Commercial operator providing aircraft parts, avionics and maintenance services for piston and turbine-engine aircraft.
- Skyland Aircraft Commercial operator providing aircraft parts and maintenance services for piston-engine aircraft.
- SkyMachines Commercial operator providing private pilot training ("flight school") and aircraft brokerage services.
- Sierra Aviation Commercial operator providing private pilot training ("flight school").
- NM Sport Aviation Offers sport pilot and private training ("flight school") and rental in a Remos GX light sport aircraft.
- Jet Warbird Training Center Commercial operator providing civilian pilots with training in ex-military jet training aircraft.
- Aerial image as of October 1996 from USGS The National Map
- (PDF), effective August 21, 2014
- FAA Terminal Procedures for SAF, effective August 21, 2014
- Resources for this airport: