Fort Smith Regional Airport

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Fort Smith Regional Airport
Fort Smith FSM.jpg
Airport typePublic
OwnerFort Smith Airport Commission
ServesFort Smith, Arkansas
Elevation AMSL469 ft / 143 m
Coordinates35°20′12″N 094°22′03″W / 35.33667°N 94.36750°W / 35.33667; -94.36750Coordinates: 35°20′12″N 094°22′03″W / 35.33667°N 94.36750°W / 35.33667; -94.36750
FSM is located in Arkansas
Location of airport in Arkansas
FSM is located in the United States
FSM (the United States)
Direction Length Surface
ft m
1/19 5,001 1,524 Asphalt
7/25 8,017 2,444 Asphalt
Statistics (2011)
Aircraft operations41,990
Based aircraft102

Fort Smith Regional Airport (IATA: FSM, ICAO: KFSM, FAA LID: FSM) is a public use joint civil-military airport located three nautical miles (6 km) southeast of the central business district of Fort Smith, in Sebastian County, Arkansas, United States.[1] FSM is governed by the Fort Smith Airport Commission as established by the City of Fort Smith, Arkansas. It serves the transportation needs of residents and businesses of Western Arkansas and Eastern Oklahoma. FSM is served by the regional airline affiliates of Delta Air Lines and American Airlines. It has a large population of corporate and general aviation aircraft. A full-service fixed-base operator (FBO), TAC Air, provides service to general aviation, airline and military operators.

The airport is included in the 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).[2] In 2013, the airport had 82,742 passenger boardings (enplanements).[3]

Since 1953, FSM has also been the home to Fort Smith Air National Guard Station and the Arkansas Air National Guard's 188th Wing (188 WG). Formerly a fighter wing that previously operated F-4 Phantom II, F-16 Fighting Falcon and A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft, the 188th Wing currently features three primary mission sets: Remotely Piloted Aircraft (MQ-9 Reaper); ISR (Distributed Ground Station-Arkansas); and Targeting (Space-Focused).

Air Traffic services are provided by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) from an Air Traffic Control (ATC) Tower and TRACON (Terminal Radar Approach Control).

The airline terminal offers efficient operational space, convenience of close to the door parking, complimentary Wi-Fi, wingback seating, and the restrooms were voted the America's Best Public Restroom in 2005. The Fort Smith Air Museum is located within the airline terminal.

Facilities and aircraft[edit]

Fort Smith Regional Airport covers an area of 1,359 acres (550 ha) at an elevation of 469 feet (143 m) above mean sea level. It has two runways with asphalt surfaces:[1] 7/25, the primary runway, is 8,017 by 150 feet (2,444 x 46 m) with dual instrument landing systems and can accommodate the largest aircraft; 1/19, the crosswind runway, is 5,001 by 150 feet (1,524 x 46 m).

For the 12-month period ending July 31, 2011, the airport had 41,990 aircraft operations, an average of 115 per day: 51% general aviation, 34% military, 11% air taxi, and 4% scheduled commercial. At that time there were 102 aircraft based at this airport: 53% single-engine, 21% military, 16% multi-engine, 10% jet, and 1% helicopter.[1]

Past airline service[edit]

Historically, Fort Smith was served by Braniff International Airways and Mid-Continent Airlines with both airlines commencing service to the airport during the 1940s. In 1965, Braniff introduced the first scheduled passenger jet service into the airport with British Aircraft Corporation BAC One-Eleven twin jets with nonstop flights to Shreveport and Tulsa and direct service to Kansas City, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New Orleans, Omaha and other destinations.[4] Braniff would later operate Boeing 727-200 jetliners into Fort Smith with direct, no change of plane service to Chicago, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Kansas City, Memphis, Nashville, New Orleans, New York City (JFK Airport) and Oklahoma City as well as nonstop 727 flights to Little Rock, Shreveport and Tulsa during the mid 1970s.[5][6] Braniff began serving Fort Smith during the late 1940s with Douglas DC-3 aircraft flying a daily round trip routing of Denver-Amarillo-Oklahoma City-Tulsa-Muskogee, OK-Fort Smith-Little Rock-Memphis [7] and later operated Convair 340 and Convair 440 propliners into the airport before switching to jets during the mid 1960s.[8] Mid-Continent Airlines began service to Fort Smith in 1946 flying a daily round trip routing of Kansas City-Joplin-Tulsa-Muskogee, OK-Fort Smith-Texarkana-Shreveport-New Orleans with Douglas DC-3 aircraft.[9] Mid-Continent was acquired by and merged into Braniff International in 1952.

During the mid 1970s, the original Frontier Airlines (1950-1986) was operating Boeing 737-200 jetliners and Convair 580 turboprops from the airport with nonstop service to Dallas/Ft. Worth.[6] By the late 1970s, Frontier had added Boeing 737-200 jet flights nonstop to Little Rock and Tulsa with direct one stop 737 service to Memphis and Oklahoma City in addition to nonstop 737 jet flights to Dallas/Ft. Worth.[10] During the early 1980s, Frontier was flying nonstop Boeing 737-200 jet service to Atlanta and Wichita.[11] The 737 flights to Wichita also provided one stop direct service to Denver. At this same time, Frontier was continuing to operate nonstop flights to Dallas/Ft. Worth with Convair 580 turboprops. Frontier began serving Fort Smith in 1967 when it acquired Central Airlines which had operated flights from the airport since the mid 1950s. At the time of the merger with Frontier in 1967, Central was providing service from Fort Smith to Dallas/Ft. Worth, Kansas City, Little Rock, Oklahoma City, St. Louis, Tulsa and other destinations with Convair 600 turboprops and Douglas DC-3 prop aircraft.[12] Frontier then continued to serve these destinations from Fort Smith.[13] Central began serving the airport during the mid 1950s with Douglas DC-3 flights to Dallas and Fort Worth via Paris, TX; to Tulsa and Oklahoma City via Muskogee, OK; to Kansas City via Fayetteville, AR and Joplin, MO; and to Little Rock via Hot Springs, AR.[14]

Delta Connection operated by Atlantic Southeast Airlines (ASA, now ExpressJet) flew Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia turboprop service nonstop to Dallas/Ft. Worth from the late 1980s to the late 1990s.[15] This service ended when Delta closed its hub operation at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW).

Following its acquisition of Republic Airlines (1979-1986) in 1986, Northwest Airlines established a hub in Memphis. By 1989, Northwest Airlink operated by Express Airlines I (now Endeavor Air) was flying nonstop service between Memphis and Fort Smith with British Aerospace BAe Jetstream 31 and Saab 340 turboprops on behalf of Northwest via a code sharing agreement.[16]

Delta Connection then added a nonstop flight to Atlanta in 2007. With the merger of Delta Air Lines and Northwest Airlines the service to Atlanta was temporarily discontinued, thus leaving Fort Smith with Delta Connection service only to the Memphis hub.[17] On June 7, 2012, service to Atlanta was restored with a single daily flight. Later that year, Delta then terminated Memphis service on September 5, but kept the same number of flights into Fort Smith by increasing service to Atlanta to three flights a day operated by Delta Connection with Canadair CRJ-200 regional jets.[18]

American Eagle service to Dallas/Ft. Worth was initially operated by Metroflight Airlines, a division of Metro Airlines, with Convair 580 turboprops via a code sharing agreement with American Airlines during the early and mid 1980s.[19] The DFW service operated on behalf of American was then flown with Saab 340 turboprops from the late 1980s to the late 1990s in competition with the Delta Connection service to DFW.[15] American Eagle then operated ATR 72 turboprop aircraft with nonstop service to Dallas/Ft. Worth until the late 2000s when it switched to Embraer ERJ-145 regional jets.

On September 1, 2015 Delta Connection switched to using Canadair CRJ-700 regional jet aircraft featuring first class as well as coach seats. At the same time, flights to Atlanta were reduced from three to two flights per day.[20]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

The following airlines offer scheduled passenger service:

American Eagle Dallas/Fort Worth
Delta Connection Atlanta


Passenger Boardings by Year (from FAA data)[21]

Year Passengers Percent Change
1999 102,583
2000 99,493 Decrease -3.01%
2001 90,311 Decrease -9.23%
2002 85,137 Decrease -5.73%
2003 89,510 Increase 5.14%
2004 90,613 Increase 1.23%
2005 100,546 Increase 10.96%
2006 93,795 Decrease -6.71%
2007 97,344 Increase 3.78%
2008 85,095 Decrease -12.58%
2009 76,401 Decrease -10.22%
2010 83,902 Increase 9.82%
2011 84,136 Increase 0.28%
2012 84,751 Increase 0.73%
2013 82,742 Decrease -2.37%
2014 90,214 Increase 9.03%
2015 84,136 Decrease -6.74%
2016 83,920 Decrease -0.26%
2017 85,726 Increase 2.15%

Top destinations[edit]

Busiest domestic routes from FSM
(February 2016 – January 2017)
Rank City Passengers
1 Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas 55,000
2 Atlanta, Georgia 31,000


  1. ^ a b c d FAA Airport Master Record for FSM (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective May 31, 2012.
  2. ^ "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. External link in |work= (help)
  3. ^ "All Airports with CY 2013 Enplanements" (PDF, 204 KB). [1]. Federal Aviation Administration. January 26, 2015. External link in |work= (help)
  4. ^, Sept. 7, 1965 Braniff International system timetable
  5. ^, Oct. 27, 1974 Braniff International system timetable
  6. ^ a b Feb. 1, 1976 edition, Official Airline Guide (OAG), Fort Smith flight schedules
  7. ^, May 1, 1948 Braniff International Airways system timetable
  8. ^, Oct. 25, 1964 Braniff International Airways system timetable
  9. ^, July 1, 1946 Mid-Continent Airlines system timetable
  10. ^, March 2, 1977 Frontier Airlines system timetable
  11. ^, April 1, 1981 Official Airline Guide (OAG) Fort Smith flight schedules
  12. ^, July 1, 1967 Central Airlines system timetable
  13. ^, Oct. 29, 1967 Frontier Airlines system timetable
  14. ^, June 1, 1955 Central Airlines system timetable
  15. ^ a b, Official Airline Guide (OAG) Feb. 15, 1989; Oct. 1, 1991; April 2, 1995 and June 1, 1999 editions, Dallas/Ft. Worth-Fort Smith flight schedules
  16. ^, Dec. 15, 1989 Official Airline Guide (OAG), Memphis-Fort Smith schedules
  17. ^ "Fort Smith airport to lose Delta connection to Atlanta". The City Wire. 28 April 2009. Retrieved 15 March 2015.
  18. ^ Aric Mitchell (26 June 2012). "Atlanta to be hub for all Fort Smith Delta flights". The City Wire. Retrieved 15 March 2015.
  19. ^, Official Airline Guide (OAG) April 1, 1983 and Feb. 15 1985 editions, Dallas/Ft. Worth-Fort Smith flight schedules
  20. ^ Minutes of Airport Commission Regular Meeting, July 23, 2015
  21. ^ "Passenger Boarding (Enplanement) and All-Cargo Data for U.S. Airports Airports". Federal Aviation Administration. Retrieved 15 March 2015.
  22. ^ "RITA | BTS | Transtats". Bureau of Transportation Statistics. January 2017. Retrieved May 1, 2017.

External links[edit]