Boeing Field

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King County International Airport

Boeing Field
Airport typePublic
Owner/OperatorKing County
ServesSeattle, Washington
LocationSeattle / Tukwila, King County, Washington, United States
Elevation AMSL21 ft / 6 m
Coordinates47°31′48″N 122°18′07″W / 47.53000°N 122.30194°W / 47.53000; -122.30194Coordinates: 47°31′48″N 122°18′07″W / 47.53000°N 122.30194°W / 47.53000; -122.30194
A map with a grid overlay showing the terminals runways and other structures of the airport.
FAA diagram
BFI is located in Washington (state)
BFI is located in the United States
Direction Length Surface
ft m
14R/32L 10,007 3,050 Asphalt
14L/32R 3,709 1,131 Asphalt
Statistics (2018)
Aircraft operations183,268
Based aircraft384
Boeing Field aerial from the northwest
Boeing Field terminal interior, showing the ticket counters of Kenmore Air and SeaPort Airlines, before the latter discontinued service to the airport in 2012

Boeing Field, officially King County International Airport (IATA: BFI, ICAO: KBFI, FAA LID: BFI), is a public airport owned and operated by King County, five miles south of downtown Seattle, Washington.[1] The airport is sometimes referred to as KCIA (King County International Airport), but is not the airport identifier. The airport has some passenger service operated by Kenmore Air and JSX, but is mostly used by general aviation and cargo. It is named for the founder of Boeing, William E. Boeing and was constructed in 1928, serving as the city's primary airport until the opening of Seattle–Tacoma International Airport in 1944. The airport's property is mostly in Seattle just south of Georgetown, with its southern tip extending into Tukwila. The Airport covers 634 acres (257 ha), averages more than 180,000 operations annually, and has approximately 380 based aircraft.[1]


Boeing Field was Seattle's main passenger airport from its construction in 1928 until Seattle–Tacoma International Airport began operations in the late 1940s, with the exception of its use for military purposes during World War II. The Boeing Company continues to use the field for testing and delivery of its airplanes, and it is still a major regional cargo hub. It is also used by Air Force One when the President of the United States visits the Seattle area.

The August 1946 OAG lists 24 United Airlines weekday departures, 10 weekly flights on Northwest Airlines and several Pan Am Douglas DC-3s a week to Juneau via Annette Island Airport, which then served Ketchikan.

Boeing Field has two air carriers, JSX, that offers daily passenger jet service to Oakland International Airport, and Kenmore Air that offers 4-6 daily services to each Friday Harbor and East Sound/Orcas Island. Before 2019, the last scheduled passenger jet service was on Hughes Airwest in 1971 and before that by predecessors Air West and West Coast Airlines, all using DC-9s. A proposal by Southwest Airlines in June 2005 was submitted to King County to relocate from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to Boeing Field, but was rejected by King County Executive Ron Sims in October. A similar proposal by Alaska Airlines (which was a response to the Southwest proposal) was also rejected. Southwest Airlines said it wanted to avoid the heavy fees at Sea-Tac due to its expansion program.

The transfer of ownership of Boeing Field from King County to the Port of Seattle was proposed in 2007 as part of a land swap with land owned by the Port.[2]

The National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015 called it a primary commercial service airport.[3] Federal Aviation Administration records say the airport had 34,597 passenger boardings (enplanements) in calendar year 2008,[4] 35,863 in 2009 and 33,656 in 2010.[5]


The airport covers 634 acres (257 ha) at an elevation of 21 feet (6 m). It has two asphalt runways: 14R/32L is 10,007 by 200 feet (3,050 x 61 m) and 14L/32R is 3,709 by 100 feet (1,131 x 30 m).[1] In the year ending January 1, 2019 the airport had 183,268 aircraft operations, average 502 per day: 79% general aviation, 15% air taxi, 6% airline, and <1% military. 384 aircraft were then based at this airport: 229 single-engine, 40 multi-engine, 88 jet, 26 helicopter, and 1 glider.[1] The runway numbers were updated from 13/31 to 14/32 in August 2017, due to shifting magnetic headings.

Boeing Company[edit]

The Boeing Company has facilities at the airport. Final preparations for delivery of Boeing 737 aircraft after the first test flight are made at Boeing Field.[6] Boeing facilities at the airport have also included a paint hangar[7] and flight test facilities.[8] The initial assembly of the 737 was at Boeing Field in the 1960s because the factory in Renton was at capacity building the Boeing 707 and Boeing 727. After 271 aircraft, production moved to Renton in late 1970.[9][10] Production of military airborne early warning and control aircraft based on the 737, such as Project Wedgetail (Australia) aircraft and Peace Eagle (Turkey) aircraft is located at Boeing Field.[11]

Museum of Flight[edit]

The Museum of Flight is on the southwest corner of the field. Among the aircraft on display is an ex-British Airways Concorde, lent to the museum from BA, a supersonic airliner that landed at Boeing Field on its first visit to Seattle on November 15, 1984.[12] Aircraft on the airfield can be seen from the museum.

Police and fire response[edit]

The King County International Airport contracts with the King County Sheriff's Office for police services. Deputies assigned to the airport wear a mix of both Police and Fire uniforms, turnouts etc., which includes single Police, Fire/ARFF patch, and drive King County International Airport Police patrol cars. There are currently 17 patrol officers/sergeants and one chief assigned full-time to the airport. Officers assigned to the airport are also required to obtain a Washington State Fire Fighter One certification and an Emergency Medical Technician certification.

Airlines and destinations[edit]


Kenmore Air Eastsound, Friday Harbor
JSX Las Vegas (begins July 23, 2020)


AirPac Airlines Burlington/Mount Vernon, Everett, Eugene, Port Angeles, Portland (OR), Sacramento–Executive, Spokane, Spokane–Felts, Yakima
Ameriflight Bellingham, Burlington/Mount Vernon, Everett, Ketchikan, Lewiston, Moses Lake, Olympia, Omak, Portland (OR), Spokane, Tacoma, Tri-Cities, Walla Walla, Wenatchee, Yakima
SkyLink Express Vancouver
UPS Airlines Anchorage, Chicago/Rockford, Denver, Louisville, Ontario, Portland (OR), Spokane, Vancouver.
Western Air Express Portland (OR)

Airline service[edit]

Boeing Field had scheduled passenger flights on West Coast Airlines to Idaho, Oregon, Washington state, northern California, western Montana, northern Utah, and Calgary in Alberta. The airline's April 1968 timetable showed non-stop service to Aberdeen, WA/Hoquiam, WA, Boise, ID, Olympia, WA, Pasco, WA, Portland, OR, Salt Lake City, UT, Spokane, WA, Tacoma, WA, Wenatchee, WA and Yakima, WA.[13] West Coast, which had its headquarters in the Seattle area and operated all of its flights from Boeing Field, merged with Pacific Air Lines and Bonanza Air Lines to form Air West (later renamed Hughes Airwest) which continued at Boeing Field until it moved to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in 1971.

Aeroamerica, an airline based at Boeing Field from 1971 to 1982 which operated Boeing 707s and Boeing 720s, flew nonstop to Spokane, Washington.[14][unreliable source?] Air Oregon, a commuter airline, scheduled Swearingen Metros in 1979 to its hub in Portland, Oregon.[15][unreliable source?] Helijet, a helicopter airline based at Vancouver International Airport in British Columbia, operated scheduled helicopter flights to the Victoria Harbour Heliport in British Columbia with direct one stop service to Helijet's Vancouver Harbour Heliport next to downtown Vancouver, B.C.[16]

JSX began service between Boeing Field and Oakland International Airport on July 1, 2019, using Embraer 135 jets.[17] As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, JSX announced in April 2020 that it would indefinitely cease its flights from Boeing Field.[18]

ICE flights[edit]

The U.S. Justice Department filed a lawsuit against King County in 2020 to allow Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deportation flights to leave from Boeing Field. The county had previously halted the practice, forcing the flights to be redirected to Yakima Air Terminal.[19]

See also[edit]


 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website

  1. ^ a b c d e FAA Airport Master Record for BFI (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective November 15, 2012.
  2. ^ County, Port, BNSF Announce Signed Memoranda on Land Deal Archived 2008-07-25 at the Wayback Machine, Port of Seattle, February 26, 2007. Retrieved 2009-02-21.
  3. ^ "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF). National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2010. Archived from the original (PDF, 2.03 MB) on 2012-09-27.
  4. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2008" (PDF, 1.0 MB). CY 2008 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. December 18, 2009.
  5. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2010" (PDF, 189 KB). CY 2010 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2011.
  6. ^ "Major Production Facilities: Renton, Washington". The Boeing Company. Archived from the original on March 5, 2009. Retrieved February 22, 2009.
  7. ^ "Earthquake Update – Frequently Asked Questions" (Press release). The Boeing Company. March 2, 2001. Archived from the original on September 17, 2010. Retrieved February 22, 2009.
  8. ^ Tinseth, Randy. "Boeing Field 1969". Randy's Journal. Boeing. Archived from the original on September 5, 2008. Retrieved February 22, 2009.
  9. ^ Wallace, James (February 12, 2006). "Boeing delivers its 5,000th 737". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved December 18, 2007.
  10. ^ Gates, Dominic (December 30, 2005). "Successor to Boeing 737 likely to be built in state". The Seattle Times. Archived from the original on May 2, 2007. Retrieved February 10, 2008.
  11. ^ "Boeing Conducts Successful First Flight of Australia's 737 Airborne Early Warning & Control Aircraft" (Press release). The Boeing Company. May 20, 2004. Archived from the original on March 18, 2006. Retrieved February 22, 2009.
  12. ^ Crowley, Walt (November 5, 2003). "Supersonic Concorde airliner pays its first visit to Seattle on November 15, 1984". HistoryLink. Retrieved May 12, 2020.
  13. ^ "West Coast Airlines Timetables Effective: April 28, 1968". West Coast Airlines. Retrieved May 12, 2020 – via Airline Timetable Images.
  14. ^ "Aeroamerica Air Club". Archived from the original on 2018-06-22. Retrieved 2019-02-20.
  15. ^ "Air Oregon System Timetable Effective August 5, 1979". Air Oregon. p. 2. Retrieved May 12, 2020 – via Airline Timetable Images.
  16. ^ "Helicopter service to link Seattle with Victoria, B.C." The Seattle Times. April 8, 1997. Retrieved May 12, 2020.
  17. ^ McGinnis, Chris; Jue, Tim (April 23, 2019). "JetSuiteX to fly between Oakland and Seattle-Boeing Field". SFGate. Retrieved April 23, 2019.
  18. ^ McIntosh, Andrew (April 9, 2020). "Two carriers suspend passenger flights from Boeing Field". Puget Sound Business Journal. Retrieved May 12, 2020.
  19. ^ Gutman, David (February 10, 2020). "Trump administration suing King County to allow deportation flights from Boeing Field". The Seattle Times. Retrieved February 11, 2020.

External links[edit]

Media related to Boeing Field at Wikimedia Commons