La Crosse Regional Airport

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La Crosse Regional Airport
Airport type Public
Owner City of La Crosse
Serves La Crosse, Wisconsin
Elevation AMSL 656 ft / 200 m
Coordinates 43°52′45″N 091°15′24″W / 43.87917°N 91.25667°W / 43.87917; -91.25667Coordinates: 43°52′45″N 091°15′24″W / 43.87917°N 91.25667°W / 43.87917; -91.25667
FAA airport diagram
FAA airport diagram
LSE is located in Wisconsin
Location of airport in Wisconsin
Direction Length Surface
ft m
18/36 8,742 2,665 Concrete
13/31 6,050 1,844 Asphalt
3/21 5,199 1,585 Asphalt
Statistics (2012)
Aircraft operations 33,715
Based aircraft 90
Enplanements 125,981

La Crosse Regional Airport (IATA: LSE[2]ICAO: KLSEFAA LID: LSE) is a city owned, public use airport located four nautical miles (5 mi, 7 km) northwest of the central business district of La Crosse, a city in La Crosse County, Wisconsin, United States.[1] Until August 2013, the airport was known as La Crosse Municipal Airport.[3]

It occupies the northern area of French Island, next to the Mississippi River. The airport serves the La Crosse Metropolitan Area, including the surrounding three-state area of west-central Wisconsin, southeastern Minnesota and northeastern Iowa. La Crosse's airport is the closest scheduled passenger service airport to the U.S. Army Fort McCoy military base near Sparta, Wisconsin.

This airport is included in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015, which categorized it as a primary commercial service airport.[4] As per Federal Aviation Administration records, the airport had 111,462 passenger boardings (enplanements) in calendar year 2008,[5] 104,537 enplanements in 2009, and 109,962 in 2010.[6]


The La Crosse Airport can accommodate the largest aircraft in service today. One of the largest passenger jets, the Boeing 747 Air Force One (AF1), has made overnight trips to this airport with every U.S. President for the last 20 years.

In 1998, President Bill Clinton flew to La Crosse in AF1 Boeing 707 (VC-137C SAM 260000. This was the last time a US President flew on this plane, as it was then retired to the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio. One of the world's largest cargo jets, a Russian Antonov An-124, has flown to the La Crosse airport when heavy transport was needed for the international flight of local businesses. The US military C-5A cargo and KC-10 Extender cargo/refueling jumbo jets have been at the annual summer Deke Slayton Airshow (area astronaut), Airfest at the airport, along with vintage and modern military and private planes. The show has also featured the US Navy Blue Angels and the US Air Force Thunderbirds. In the past, Sun Country Airlines has flown DC-10 (380 passenger seats) on charter flights from La Crosse to other cities. The New Orleans Saints NFL football team flew the 180-seat Delta Air Lines Boeing 757 planes each week to La Crosse for summer camp, and to and from NFL cities for pre-season games.

The airport's control tower was one of 143 towers slated for closure by the FAA due to the 2013 Federal sequester.[7][8] However, the closures did not occur after Congress restored funding to the FAA.[9]

Facilities and aircraft[edit]

La Crosse Regional Airport covers an area of 1,380 acres (558 ha) at an elevation of 656 feet (200 m) above mean sea level. It has three runways: 18/36 is 8,742 by 150 feet (2,665 x 46 m) with a concrete surface; 13/31 is 6,050 by 150 feet (1,844 x 46 m) with an asphalt surface; 3/21 is 5,199 by 150 feet (1,585 x 46 m) with an asphalt surface.[1]

The original runway layout is still in use, but over time many improvements have taken place. Two of the runways were extended to 6,050 feet (1,840 m) and 8,742 feet (2,665 m). The 8,742-foot paved runway is the fourth longest in Wisconsin.

The airport has a modern two-story passenger terminal with three passenger gates. The following services are provided in the terminal:

  • Delta Air Lines passenger counter and kiosk
  • American Eagle Airlines passenger counter
  • Avis car rental
  • Hertz car rental
  • National Alamo car rental
  • Enterprise Car Rental (shuttle to downtown)
  • LSE Airport Gift Shop
  • Meeting rooms

There are 11 corporate hangars and eight multi-aircraft T-hangars on the airport property. There is a cellphone-use free parking area for those awaiting passenger arrivals.

For the 12-month period ending December 31, 2009, the airport had 30,209 aircraft operations, an average of 82 per day: 65% general aviation, 27% air taxi, 6% military, and 2% scheduled commercial. At that time there were 84 aircraft based at this airport: 81% single-engine, 11% jet, 7% multi-engine, and 1% helicopter.[1]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

Two major airlines, Delta Air Lines, served by Delta Connection, and American Airlines served by Envoy Air, provide 11 daily departures and arrivals with direct service to two connecting cities: Chicago and Minneapolis. Sun Country Airlines provides periodic Boeing 737 to cities such as Bullhead City, Arizona (adjacent to Laughlin, Nevada).

The La Crosse airport is served by Delta Connection's 50-seat Bombardier CRJ200 and the newer 76-seat Bombardier CRJ900 and Embraer 175 regional jets (both with regional jet uncommon 1st class seats). American Eagle also flies 50-seat Embraer 145 and larger CRJ700 regional passenger planes from Chicago.

Airlines Destinations
American Eagle Chicago-O'Hare
Delta Connection Minneapolis/St. Paul

Charter Service[edit]

Airline Destinations
Sun Country Laughlin/Bullhead International Airport

Top destinations[edit]

Busiest domestic routes out of LSE
(Jun 2014 - May 2015) [10]
Rank City Passengers Carriers
1 Chicago, IL (O’Hare) 49,000 American Eagle
2 Minneapolis/St Paul, MN 40,000 Delta Connection
3 Detroit, MI 4,000 Delta Connection
4 Laughlin, AZ 1,000 Sun Country


  1. ^ a b c d FAA Airport Master Record for LSE (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. Effective November 15, 2012.
  2. ^ "IATA Airport Code Search (LSE: La Crosse Municipal)". International Air Transport Association. Retrieved July 17, 2013. 
  3. ^ Chris Hubbuch; Allison Geyer (12 August 2013). "Use it or lose it: La Crosse airport attempts to lure fare-conscious travelers with convenience". La Crosse Tribune. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  4. ^ "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF, 2.03 MB). National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2008" (PDF, 1.0 MB). CY 2008 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. December 18, 2009. 
  6. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2010" (PDF, 189 KB). CY 2010 Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2011. 
  7. ^ "FAA Contract Tower Closure List". American Association of Airport Executives. March 22, 2013. 
  8. ^ "FAA: 149 control towers to close at small airports". USA Today. March 22, 2013. 
  9. ^ Bloom, Betsy (11 May 2013). "Airport tower to stay open". La Crosse Tribune. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  10. ^,%20WI:%20La%20Crosse%20Municipal&carrier=FACTS

External links[edit]