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Long Beach Airport

Coordinates: 33°49′04″N 118°09′06″W / 33.81778°N 118.15167°W / 33.81778; -118.15167
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Long Beach Airport
Airport typePublic
OwnerCity of Long Beach
ServesGreater Los Angeles
LocationLong Beach, California, United States
Elevation AMSL60 ft / 18 m
Coordinates33°49′04″N 118°09′06″W / 33.81778°N 118.15167°W / 33.81778; -118.15167
FAA airport diagram
FAA airport diagram
Direction Length Surface
ft m
12/30 10,000 3,048 Asphalt
08L/26R 6,192 1,887 Asphalt
08R/26L 3,918 1,194 Asphalt
Number Length Surface
ft m
H2 20 6 Asphalt
H3 300 91 Asphalt
H4 20 6 Asphalt
H5 20 6 Asphalt
Statistics (2023)
Total passengers3,739,307
Aircraft operations (thru 11/1/2023)374,956
Sources: FAA[1][2]

Long Beach Airport (IATA: LGB, ICAO: KLGB, FAA LID: LGB) is a public airport 3 mi (4.8 km) northeast of downtown Long Beach, in Los Angeles County, California, United States.[1] It is also called Daugherty Field, named after local aviator Earl Daugherty. The airport was an operating base for JetBlue, but this ended on October 6, 2020, as the carrier moved its operating base to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), amidst the then-ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Consequently, Southwest Airlines became the airport's largest airline.

The National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015 categorized it as a primary commercial service airport.[3] Federal Aviation Administration records say the airport had 1,413,251 passenger boardings in calendar year 2008,[4] 1,401,903 in 2009 and 1,451,404 in 2010.[5]


Long Beach Airport with Mount San Antonio and Timber Mountain in the background

Located near the border between Los Angeles County and Orange County, Long Beach Airport serves the Los Angeles MSA. Due to its close proximity to the busier and larger LAX 20 miles away, the airport sees more domestic commercial passenger, cargo, military, and general aviation activity. The airport's placement near many residential areas has led to it having one of the country's strictest ordinances limiting airport noise.[6]

It is the 10th busiest airport in California based on passenger boardings, at 1.4 million. As of May 2018, JetBlue operated the most airline flights out of Long Beach; the other airlines are American, Delta, Hawaiian, and Southwest. Air cargo carriers, including FedEx and UPS, also use LGB. 57,000 tons of goods are carried each year.

The Boeing Company (formerly McDonnell Douglas) maintains maintenance facilities for Boeing and McDonnell Douglas/Douglas aircraft (including the historic DC-9 and DC-10 aircraft) near the Long Beach Airport, and produced the C-17 through 2015. The manufacture facilities were leased to Mercedes-Benz and Relativity Space. Virgin Galactic established the satellite launch vehicles at the Long Beach Airport and operated by Virgin Orbit.[7][8] Gulfstream Aerospace operates a completion/service center.

The Long Beach Airport has an aggressive noise abatement program, with three full-time noise specialists.[9] Under Long Beach municipal law, the city can criminally prosecute the aircraft's owner and the pilots for breaking the noise ordinance. As the airport continues to grow and air traffic increases, so do the complaints about loud and low flying aircraft. The airport produces a monthly noise and complaint report.[10]

Because of the noise abatement program, commercial (passenger or cargo) flights have been restricted since 1981, when a limit of 15 daily flights was instituted. As of 2023, 41 daily flights are permanent, and 17 flights are supplemental (which are adjusted each year depending on noise budget results), for a total limit of 58 flights per day.[11] However, many other types of flights take place, including charters, private aviation, flight schools, law enforcement flights, helicopters, advertising blimps, and planes that tow advertising banners. Long Beach airport is one of the busiest general aviation airports in the world, with 398,433 aircraft movements in 2007.[12]

Long Beach Airport has one terminal in Streamline Moderne style that is a historical landmark and was renovated in early 2013.

ATP Flight School operates a professional commercial pilot flight training program at Long Beach Airport/Daugherty Field.[13]


The first transcontinental flight, a biplane flown by Calbraith Perry Rodgers, landed in 1911 on Long Beach's sandy beach. From 1911 until the airport was created, planes used the beach as a runway.

Barnstormer Earl S. Daugherty had leased the area that later became the airport for air shows, stunt flying, wing walking and passenger rides. Later, he started the world's first flight school in 1919 at the same location. In 1923 Daugherty convinced the city council to use the site to create the first municipal airport.

The west end of the airport near Wardlow St. and Cherry Ave. in 1936

Douglas "Wrong Way" Corrigan used to fly regularly out of Daugherty Field. Before his infamous flight from Brooklyn, New York, to Ireland in 1938, he had flown from Long Beach to New York. After authorities refused his request to continue on to Ireland, he was supposed to return to Daugherty Field, but a claimed navigational error routed him to Ireland. He never publicly acknowledged having flown there intentionally.

The main terminal building was designed by architects William Horace Austin and Kenneth Smith Wing, and was constructed in 1941.[14]

The murals and mosaics were created by artist Grace Clements and completed in 1941, with the support of the Works Progress Administration. They depict aviation, navigation, and constellations.[15]

In the 1940s and 1950s the only airline nonstops from Long Beach Airport were to Los Angeles, San Diego, and sometimes Catalina Island; in 1962 Western Airlines introduced a daily Electra to San Francisco and one a day to San Diego. Jet schedules began in 1968; in 1969 Western Boeing 737-200s flew to Las Vegas, Oakland, and San Francisco. In 1980 the only jets were Pacific Southwest Airlines flights to SFO.

Between 1990 and 1992 Continental, Delta, TWA, and USAir ended service to LGB, and American Airlines left in early 2006.[16] Alaska Airlines later ended mainline service, and ended codeshare service in 2015. Delta Connection regional jet flights continue at LGB. In February 2016 Southwest Airlines announced plans to begin service to the airport with an initial four available slots. On July 9, 2020, JetBlue announced that they would end service to the airport in October 2020, instead expanding their operations at nearby Los Angeles International Airport.[17]

Military use[edit]

Douglas C-74 Globemaster at Long Beach Airport with Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress and Curtiss C-46 Commando aircraft in the background

To attract the United States Navy, the City of Long Beach built a hangar and an administrative building and then offered to lease it to the Navy for $1 a year for the establishment of a Naval Reserve air base. On May 10, 1928, the U.S. Navy commissioned the field as a Naval Reserve air base (NRAB Long Beach). Two years later the city built a hangar and administrative building for the United States Army Air Corps as well. Significant developments to the little city airport began only after the city built hangars and administrative facilities for the Army and Navy in 1928–30.

As a Naval Reserve Air Base the mission was to instruct, train and drill Naval Reserve personnel. A ground school was offered three nights a week at the base and two nights a week at the University of California in Los Angeles until 1930, when ground school was continuously offered at the base. On April 9, 1939, training in night flight began, and shortly thereafter its facilities began to be used by fleet aircraft as well.

With increased activity by airlines and the private airplane industry, particularly with Douglas Aircraft showing an interest in the Long Beach Municipal Airport, the facility needed more space. With Douglas Aircraft as a resident, the attitude of Long Beach's authorities became openly hostile to naval aviation, with its city manager saying that "the sooner the Navy gets out of the Long Beach airport, the better we will like it."

The Navy began a survey for another site, unknown to city officials at the time. Admiral Ernest J. King, then the Chief of the Bureau of Aeronautics, and Admirals William D. Leahy, Joseph K. Taussig, and Allen E. Smith pointedly requested that the city of Long Beach repair the runways and reminded the city that the Pacific Fleet, then lying offshore in Long Beach and San Pedro harbors, had a payroll of more than $1 million a month. Eventually the city complied with the Navy's requests.

The city remained hostile toward approving a lease on any additional land that the Naval Reserve now required.

The Navy, fed up with the city of Long Beach, decided upon the purchase of some property owned by a Mrs. Susanna Bixby Bryant, a fact made known by the commander of the base, Commander Thomas A. Gray, to the Chief of the Bureau of Aeronautics, Admiral John H. Towers. The circumstances behind the purchase were revealed to James V. Forrestal, Under Secretary of the Navy, and by him to the House Naval Affairs committee who approved the purchase. Although Comdr. Gray had offered Mrs. Bryant $350 an acre, in the best patriotic spirit she sold the property at $300 an acre.

With the site acquired, in 1941, construction funds soon followed and NAS Los Alamitos began to take shape. Upon the transfer of the Naval Reserve Training Facility to Los Alamitos, to the surprise of city officials of Long Beach, in 1942, instead of returning the Naval Reserve Air Base facilities at Long Beach to the city, the Navy turned over the facilities to the United States Army Air Forces, which had established a training base next to it. NARB Long Beach was not totally abandoned but became a Naval Auxiliary Air Station (NAAS).

Through World War II the airfield was given over to the war effort. In August 1941 the Civil Aeronautics Administration took over control of the airport, which had grown to 500 acres (2.0 km2). Once Los Alamitos became an operational base in 1941, NAAS Long Beach now turned to servicing carrier borne F4Fs, SBDs, FM-2s, F4Us, F6Fs, TBF/TBMs, and SB2Cs. In addition, it had utility aircraft and such patrol planes as the PBY, SNB, GB3, NH, GH, and SNJ.

Shops inside the terminal

As the Navy's activities began to be shifted to Los Alamitos, the Long Beach Army Airfield at Long Beach became the home of the Army's Air Transport Command's Ferrying Division, with the 1736th Ferrying Squadron assigned,[18] which included a squadron of 18 women pilots commanded by Barbara London, a long time Long Beach aviator.

Like the Naval Air Ferry Command at NAS Terminal Island, the Army's ferrying work was an immense undertaking, thanks to Douglas Aircraft's wartime production. Ground was broken for the initial Douglas Aircraft facility in November 1940, with dedication in October 1941. Douglas had been drawn to Long Beach's growing municipal airport with its Army and Navy facilities. With wartime contracts the company went into intensive production. The company's first C-47 was delivered 16 days after the attack of Pearl Harbor and another 4,238 were produced during the war. The plant turned out some 1,000 A-20 Havocs, not to mention 3,000 B-17 Flying Fortresses and 1,156 A-26 Invaders.

With the end of the war the U.S. Navy abandoned any use of Long Beach Municipal Airport and with it the designation of Long Beach as a Naval Auxiliary Air Station.


Long Beach Airport's runway 30
The old terminal building in 2009

Long Beach Airport covers 1,166 acres (472 ha) at an elevation of 60 feet (18 m). It has three asphalt runways:[1][19]

  • 12/30 is 10,000 by 200 feet (3,048 x 61 m)
  • 8L/26R is 6,192 by 150 feet (1,887 x 46 m)
  • 8R/26L is 3,918 by 100 feet (1,194 x 30 m)

It has four helipads:

  • H2 is 20 by 20 feet (6 x 6 m)
  • H3 is 300 by 35 feet (91 x 11 m)
  • H4 is 20 by 20 feet (6 x 6 m)
  • H5 is 20 by 20 feet (6 x 6 m)

Runways 16L/34R and 16R/34L were permanently closed on July 21, 2016. Runway 16L/34R was 3,330 by 75 feet (1,015 x 23 m), and runway 16R/34L was 4,470 by 75 feet (1,362 x 23 m). Both runways were removed.[20]

In the year ending November 1, 2023, the airport had 374,956 aircraft operations, average 1,027 per day: 88% general aviation, 9% airline, 3% air taxi, and <1% military. 398 aircraft were then based at the airport: 255 single-engine, 72 multi-engine, 37 jet, and 34 helicopter.[1]

Airlines and destinations[edit]


Delta Air Lines Salt Lake City
Delta Connection Salt Lake City [21]
Hawaiian Airlines Honolulu, Kahului [22]
Southwest Airlines Albuquerque, Austin, Boise, Chicago–Midway, Colorado Springs, Dallas–Love, Denver, El Paso, Honolulu, Houston–Hobby, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Nashville, Oakland, Phoenix–Sky Harbor, Portland (OR), Reno/Tahoe, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Jose (CA), St. Louis
Seasonal: Kahului, New Orleans, Orlando


UPS Airlines Louisville

Destinations map[edit]

Destinations map
Continental U.S. destinations from Long Beach Airport
Red = Year-round destination
Green = Seasonal destination
Blue = Future destination
Brown = Cargo destination
Hawaii destinations from Long Beach Airport
Red = Year-round destination
Blue = Future destination


Top destinations[edit]

Busiest domestic routes from LGB (January 2023 – December 2023)[23]
Rank City Passengers Airlines
1 Nevada Las Vegas, Nevada 228,000 Southwest
2 California Sacramento, California 181,000 Southwest
3 California Oakland, California 166,000 Southwest
4 Arizona Phoenix–Sky Harbor, Arizona 141,000 Southwest
5 Colorado Denver, Colorado 130,000 Southwest
6 California San Jose, California 123,000 Southwest
7 Utah Salt Lake City, Utah 120,000 Delta, Southwest
8 Hawaii Honolulu, Hawaii 120,000 Hawaiian, Southwest
9 Texas Houston–Hobby, Texas 82,000 Southwest
10 Texas Austin, Texas 74,000 Southwest

Airline market share[edit]

Largest airlines at LGB
(March 2022 – February 2023)
Rank Airline Passengers Share
1 Southwest Airlines 2,794,000 84.82%
2 Hawaiian Airlines 228,000 6.92%
3 SkyWest Airlines 195,000 5.91%
4 Mesa Airlines 74,910 2.27%
5 Delta Air Lines 2,230 0.07%
6 Other 300 0.01%

Annual traffic[edit]

Annual passenger traffic at LGB
Year Passengers Year Passengers Year Passengers
2000 637,853 2010 2,978,426 2020 1,043,773
2001 587,473 2011 3,099,488 2021 2,104,696
2002 1,453,551 2012 3,206,910 2022 3,242,831
2003 2,875,525 2013 2,942,873 2023 3,739,307
2004 2,926,873 2014 2,823,996 2024
2005 3,034,032 2015 2,523,686 2025
2006 2,758,362 2016 2,852,294 2026
2007 2,906,556 2017 3,783,805 2027
2008 2,913,926 2018 3,884,721 2028
2009 2,909,307 2019 3,584,203 2029

Ground transportation[edit]

Long Beach Transit routes 102, 104, 111, and 176 serve the airport. Specifically, route 111 southbound from the airport connects at the Downtown Long Beach Station, where a passenger can transfer to the A Line northbound, and destinations in downtown Los Angeles.[27] Route 104 connects to the Willow Street Station. Route 405 provides weekday service to/from UCLA.[28]

The San Diego Freeway (I-405) can be reached from the airport via Lakewood Boulevard (SR 19). Wardlow Road runs from the airport to the Los Angeles County/Orange County border, where it becomes Ball Road and crosses the north edge of the Disneyland Resort; Long Beach Airport is the second closest airport to Disneyland, after John Wayne Airport.

Airport improvements program[edit]

On December 12, 2012, the Long Beach Airport completed a $136 million improvement project designed to modernize the main terminal without sacrificing its historic Art Deco architecture or reputation among travelers for convenience.[29] It was developed to improve the customer experience by providing resort-like amenities, having a central palm garden, outdoor dining areas with fire pits, wine bars, and 11 gates. A new 2,000-space parking structure was completed ahead of schedule and below budget. $5 million was spent to refurbish the old terminal, which was originally built in 1941 and declared a historic landmark by the city decades later. The new terminal retains the open-air feeling of the current terminal complex, and passengers still walk across the tarmac when boarding or leaving their planes. The baggage claim also is partially enclosed, as it was before.[30]

In February 2020, the Long Beach City Council approved of a new $80-million Phase II improvement project.[31] The project includes a new ticketing building and the seismic retrofit of the historic terminal building. The project also includes moving the rental car area into the historical terminal building, new baggage claim areas, and a new meet-and-greet area. Design and construction began in 2020 and will continue through early 2024.[32]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • On March 16, 2011, a privately owned Beechcraft King Air crashed shortly after takeoff, killing five people and injuring another.[33] The NTSB determined the cause of the crash to be a result of poor pilot technique that failed to maintain aircraft control, following a momentary interruption of power to the left engine caused by water contamination of the fuel. The NTSB found the water contamination was allowed to build up in the aircraft's fuel sumps due to poor maintenance and pre-flight practices, and lack of communication between the pilot and aircraft mechanics over who was responsible for draining the sumps before each flight. Because of this, enough water was allowed to build up in the fuel sumps to initiate this accident.[34][35]

Movies and television[edit]

The airport appears in:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d FAA Airport Form 5010 for LGB PDF
  2. ^ "Monthly Noise and Activity Reports". Long Beach Airport. January 2024. Retrieved January 31, 2024.
  3. ^ "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF). faa.gov. Federal Aviation Administration. 4 October 2010. Archived from the original (PDF, 2.03 MB) on 27 September 2012.
  4. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2008" (PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. 18 December 2009.
  5. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2010" (PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. 4 October 2011.
  6. ^ "Long Beach Airport (LGB)".
  7. ^ Meeks, Karen Robes (February 12, 2015). "Virgin Galactic to build satellite launcher in Long Beach". Press-Telegram. Retrieved March 21, 2021.
  8. ^ "Virgin Galactic launches new company at its Long Beach plant". Press-Telegram. March 2, 2017. Retrieved March 21, 2021.
  9. ^ Sumers, Brian (September 22, 2013). "Long Beach makes noisy pilots — and airlines — pay". Press-Telegram. Retrieved January 24, 2015.
  10. ^ "Monthly Noise and Activity Reports". Long Beach Airport. Retrieved January 24, 2015.
  11. ^ Richardson, Brandon (December 1, 2022). "Long Beach Airport to add 5 daily flights following annual noise budget review". Long Beach Business Journal. OCLC 822084238.
  12. ^ "Traffic Movements 2007 PRELIMINARY". Airports Council International. 2007.
  13. ^ Maschke, Alena (2021-09-23). "Flight schools are seeing record enrollment as pilot shortage looms". Long Beach Business Journal. Retrieved 2023-09-18.
  14. ^ "PCAD - City of Long Beach, Long Beach Municipal Airport (LGB), Main Terminal Building, Long Beach, CA". pcad.lib.washington.edu.
  15. ^ "Long Beach Municipal Airport Murals and Mosaics - Long Beach CA". Living New Deal.
  16. ^ "American Airlines to end service from Long Beach Airport". North County Times. Associated Press. December 18, 2005. Retrieved May 27, 2010. [permanent dead link]
  17. ^ "JetBlue's West Coast Focus City Strategy Lands at LAX". BusinessWire. July 2020. Retrieved July 9, 2020.
  18. ^ Associated Press, "Pilot Survives Crash in Storm", The San Bernardino Daily Sun, Friday 7 January 1955, Volume LXI, Number 111, page 1.
  19. ^ "LGB airport data at skyvector.com". skyvector.com. Retrieved August 30, 2022.
  20. ^ "Long Beach Airport Runway Removal Paves Way for Economic Opportunities". Archived from the original on 2017-08-05. Retrieved 2016-07-21.
  21. ^ "FLIGHT SCHEDULES". Archived from the original on June 21, 2015. Retrieved March 24, 2018.
  22. ^ "Where We Fly". Retrieved March 8, 2021.
  23. ^ "Long Beach, CA: Long Beach Airport (LGB)". Bureau of Transportation Statistics. Retrieved March 30, 2024.
  24. ^ "Long Beach, CA: Long Beach Airport (LGB)". Bureau of Transportation Statistics. May 2011. Retrieved May 20, 2023.
  25. ^ "The Economic Impact of the Long Beach Airport 2011. Retrieved on Feb 12, 2015".
  26. ^ "Long Beach Airport (LGB) - Monthly Noise and Activity Reports". www.lgb.org.
  27. ^ "111 Broadway/Lakewood 112 Broadway/Clark" (PDF). Long Beach Transit. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2021-06-09.
  28. ^ "Route 405 Weekday Schedule". Long Beach Transit.
  29. ^ Meeks, Karen Robes (5 December 2012). "Long Beach Airport unveils resortlike concourse, terminals". Long Beach Press-Telegram. Retrieved 7 December 2012.
  30. ^ Weikel, Dan (May 4, 2010). "Long Beach Airport Moves Ahead With Improvement Project". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 27, 2010.
  31. ^ "City Council approves $21-million increase to airport improvement project • Long Beach Post News". lbpost.com. 12 February 2020. Retrieved 2020-10-04.
  32. ^ "Phase II Terminal Area Improvements". longbeach.gov. Retrieved 2020-10-04.
  33. ^ "Cause Of Long Beach, Calif. Plane Crash Probed". NPR. 17 March 2011. Archived from the original on 20 March 2011. Retrieved 17 March 2011.
  34. ^ Brief of Accident (Technical report). National Transportation Safety Board. 2012. WPR11FA166.
  35. ^ Factual Report – Aviation (Technical report). National Transportation Safety Board. 2012. WPR11FA166.
  36. ^ Grobaty, Tim (20 November 2012). Location Filming in Long Beach. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 9781614237754.
  37. ^ Grobaty, Tim (20 November 2012). Location Filming in Long Beach. Arcadia Publishing. ISBN 9781614237754.
  38. ^ "Rush Hour (1998) - IMDb". IMDb.
  39. ^ "The Parent Trap (1998)". IMDb.

External links[edit]