Central Nebraska Regional Airport

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Central Nebraska Regional Airport
Central Nebraska Regional Airport Logo.jpg
Airport typePublic
OwnerHall County Airport Authority
ServesGrand Island, Nebraska
Elevation AMSL1,847 ft / 563 m
Coordinates40°58′03″N 098°18′35″W / 40.96750°N 98.30972°W / 40.96750; -98.30972Coordinates: 40°58′03″N 098°18′35″W / 40.96750°N 98.30972°W / 40.96750; -98.30972
GRI is located in Nebraska
GRI is located in the United States
Direction Length Surface
ft m
17/35 7,002 2,134 Concrete
13/31 6,608 2,014 Concrete
Statistics (2017)
Aircraft operations25,242
Based aircraft47

Central Nebraska Regional Airport (IATA: GRI, ICAO: KGRI, FAA LID: GRI) is three miles northeast of Grand Island, in Hall County, Nebraska. It is owned by the Hall County Airport Authority.[1] The airport sees two airlines, subsidized by the Essential Air Service program. In 2016 the airport had 68,879 passenger boardings (enplanements), a 6.6% increase from the 64,602 enplanements in 2015.[2] The airport had 7,961 enplanements in calendar year 2008,[3] 20,136 in 2009 and 37,101 in 2010.[4]

The National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2017–2021 categorized it as a nonhub primary airport based on enplanements in 2016 (over 10,000 per year).


The facility was formerly Grand Island Army Airfield. Today about a dozen military buildings remain there including several hangars, some former warehouses being used for commercial storage and several sheds along with the old parachute building.

United Airlines stopped at GRI from the 1930s until Frontier took over in 1959.


The airport covers 1,847 acres (747 ha) at an elevation of 1,847 feet (563 m). It has two concrete runways: 17/35 is 7,002 by 150 feet (2,134 x 46 m) and 13/31 is 6,608 by 100 feet (2,014 x 30 m).[1]

In the year ending June 30, 2011 the airport had 24,387 aircraft operations, an average of 66 per day: 65% general aviation, 23% airline and 13% military. 45 aircraft were then based at this airport: 62% single-engine, 13% multi-engine, 2% jet and 22% military.[1]

Central Nebraska Regional Airport was selected to be a new Chinook Helicopter Base. The Nebraska National Guard has been on site since 2004, with ground scheduled to be broken in 2006 and the base opening in 2008.

in April 2016 a new Terminal was opened, costing estimated $20 million; the old terminal will become office space for the hall county airport authority. Gate 1 now has a fully closed Jet Bridge or "Jetway" to the aircraft, a first for any airport in the Central Nebraska area. Plans include a second jet bridge if more airlines come in.

Trego-Dugan aviation, the on-site FBO, has moved buildings, now operating adjacent to their service hangars, new space includes Wifi, Internet Cafe, and lounge for private pilots

Airlines and destinations[edit]


Allegiant Air Las Vegas, Phoenix/Mesa
American Eagle Dallas/Fort Worth

Air Midwest operating as US Airways Express on behalf of US Airways via a code sharing agreement commenced service on October 29, 2006 with two daily flights to Omaha Eppley Airfield and one daily flight to Kansas City International Airport. Air Midwest ended their service in May 2008, and local commuter air carrier Island Air then announced plans to take over but did not begin this new replacement service.

The airport has scheduled passenger jet service on two airlines. Allegiant Air began flights to Las Vegas on September 4, 2008 with McDonnell Douglas MD-80 jetliners and now flies Airbus A319 jets several days a week nonstop to Las Vegas and Phoenix, the latter being served via Phoenix–Mesa Gateway Airport.[5] In June 2011, American Eagle commenced flying between GRI and Dallas/Ft. Worth and serves the airport with Canadair CRJ-700 regional jets operated by ExpressJet via a code share agreement with American Airlines.[6] This flight has been and still is occasionally operated with a Canadair CRJ-900 by Mesa Airlines.

Past jet service[edit]

In 1977 the original Frontier Airlines (1950-1986) was flying Boeing 737-200 service on a routing of Grand Island - Lincoln - Omaha - Denver - Phoenix and was also serving the airport with Convair 580 turboprops with direct flights to Denver, Kansas City, Omaha and St. Louis.[7] Frontier pulled out in 1984. In 1986 Air Wisconsin was flying BAC One-Elevens direct to Chicago O'Hare International Airport via Lincoln.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d FAA Airport Master Record for GRI – CENTRAL NEBRASKA RGNL (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective November 9, 2017.
  2. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2016" (PDF, 831 KB). Enplanements at All Airports (Primary, Non-primary Commercial Service, and General Aviation) by State and Airport, 6 October 2017. Federal Aviation Administration. October 6, 2017.
  3. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2008" (PDF, 1.0 MB). CY 2008 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. December 18, 2009.
  4. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2010" (PDF, 189 KB). CY 2010 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2011.
  5. ^ http://www.flightaware.com, Search for flight, tail, airport or city: KGRI
  6. ^ https://www.aa.com
  7. ^ http://www.departedflights.com, March 2, 1977 Frontier timetable
  8. ^ http://www.departedflights.com, Jan. 6, 1986 Air Wisconsin timetable

Other sources[edit]

  • Essential Air Service documents (Docket OST-2002-13983) from the U.S. Department of Transportation:
    • Order 2004-5-15: selecting Great Lakes Aviation, Ltd., to provide essential air service with subsidy support at Grand Island, Kearney, McCook, North Platte, and Scottsbluff, Nebraska, for two years at a total annual subsidy of $5,233,287. Also, the Department makes final the termination of the eligibility of Norfolk, Nebraska, to receive subsidized essential air service proposed in Order Order 2003-6-25, June 19, 2003.
    • Order 2006-6-26: selecting Air Midwest for service at Grand Island and McCook, Nebraska, for two years, beginning when the carrier inaugurates full service, at a total annual subsidy of $2,296,462 for both communities. Grand Island will receive two nonstop round trips to Omaha each weekday and weekend (12 total round trips per week) and one nonstop round trip each weekday and weekend to Kansas City (6 total round trips per week); McCook will receive two one-stop round trips each weekday and weekend to Omaha (12 one-stop round trips per week); both Grand Island and McCook will be served with 19-passenger Beech 1900-D aircraft.
    • Order 2008-7-8: selecting Great Lakes Airlines, Ltd. to provide subsidized essential air service at Grand Island, Nebraska, Joplin, Missouri, El Dorado/Camden, Harrison, and Hot Springs, Arkansas, at a combined annual subsidy.
    • Order 2011-1-25: selecting American Eagle Airlines to provide essential air service (EAS) at Grand Island, Nebraska, for an annual subsidy of $2,215,582, for a two-year period beginning when the carrier inaugurates service through the end of the 24th month thereafter.

External links[edit]