Reid–Hillview Airport

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Reid–Hillview Airport of Santa Clara County
KRHV 31Approach.jpg
View of the airport from the south
KRHV airport diagram.png
Reid–Hillview airport diagram
Airport typePublic
OwnerSanta Clara County, California
LocationSan Jose, California
Elevation AMSL133 ft / 40.5 m
Coordinates37°19′58″N 121°49′11″W / 37.33278°N 121.81972°W / 37.33278; -121.81972Coordinates: 37°19′58″N 121°49′11″W / 37.33278°N 121.81972°W / 37.33278; -121.81972
Direction Length Surface
ft m
13L/31R 3,100 945 Asphalt
13R/31L 3,099 945 Asphalt

Reid–Hillview Airport of Santa Clara County (IATA: RHV, ICAO: KRHV, FAA LID: RHV) is in the eastern part of San Jose,[1] in Santa Clara County, California, United States. It is owned by Santa Clara County and is near the Evergreen district of San Jose where aviation pioneer John J. Montgomery experimented with gliders in 1911. Reid–Hillview Airport was also the official general aviation airport for the 2015 Super Bowl in Levi's Stadium (nearby Santa Clara, CA).

Reid–Hillview is a general aviation airport; there is no scheduled airline service. As with most general aviation airports air charter operations are available. The airport has a control tower that operates 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time. The FAA classifies Reid–Hillview as a reliever airport for San Jose International Airport.[2]


Groundbreaking for Reid–Hillview airport came in 1937. Bob and Cecil Reid built the Garden City Airport in 1935, which was quickly closed to make room for U.S. Route 101. Their second site was northwest of the Hillview golf course, hence the name. Until 1946 the single runway was unpaved.

Reid–Hillview was a single runway airport until 1965, when a second runway was added. The control tower opened in October 1967.[3]

The airport was the origin for an emergency supply airlift to the Watsonville Municipal Airport following the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, after mountain and coastal roads were blocked, cutting off Santa Cruz and Watsonville from relief efforts by ground. The Watsonville Airport estimates that it received 100 tons of supplies via the airlift during the week following the quake.[4] John McAvoy and Bill Dunn of the Reid–Hillview Airport Association received the 1990 Grand Award from the Bay Area's Metropolitan Transportation Commission for organizing the airlift.[5]

In 2010 San Jose State University's aviation program relocated to Reid–Hillview. The university operates out of the Swift Building, where it holds classes during the academic year.

Fixed-base operators (FBOs)[edit]

Overlooking transient parking and the control tower

At Reid–Hillview, fixed-base operators (FBOs) compete for fuel sales, aircraft rentals and/or flight training.

  • Aerial Avionics[6]
  • AeroDynamic Aviation,[7] formerly Amelia Reid Aviation
  • Air Accord[8]
  • The Flying 20's[9]
  • Nice Air Aviation[10]
  • San Jose Fuel Company[11]
  • Squadron 2 Flying Club[12]
  • Trade Winds Aviation[13]
  • Victory Aero Maintenance[14]

Future airport plans[edit]

The Santa Clara County wrote up a 120+ page document[15] containing information for future plans and expansions for Reid–Hillview. In the mid-2000s the county announced they would demolish the second story of the airport terminal to make room for new offices for airport administration. They failed to follow up on this plan, and the second story has been sitting idle ever since.

Included in the document, the county also planned on adding small expansions to the runway to allow turboprops and small business jets to land. Although turboprops and small business jets still land in the current runway, this minor expansion will allow a larger flow of these type of aircraft to land.

On December 4, 2018 the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 to not accept new FAA grant funding for the airport, which allows the county to explore alternative uses for the land. Previously accepted grants require the county to keep the airport open through 2031.[16]

Between 2019 and 2020, Santa Clara County undertook a community process to explore possible future uses for the airport site, resulting in the draft Reid Hillview Vision Plan.

Its vision statement reads:

“This East San Jose neighborhood will be a place of empowerment built on our culture, diversity and history, and sustained by education, well-being, and economic opportunity for the community.[17]

Ground transportation[edit]

Capitol Expressway (County Route G21) is at the entrance to the airport at Cunningham Avenue.

Rental cars/taxi[edit]

Enterprise car rental is available on the field next to the Airport Shoppe. Nice Air also has rental vehicles.


The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) has its Eastridge Transit Center across Tully Road at Eastridge Mall, about a half-mile walk southbound along Capitol Expressway.

VTA has plans for a bus rapid transit line from the Diridon train station in downtown San Jose to the Eastridge Transit Center. Further plans with less certain funding include a light rail extension from the Alum Rock station to Eastridge. In both cases, the segment along Capitol Expressway would serve Reid–Hillview Airport.

Other airport amenities[edit]

As of a few years ago,[when?] Reid–Hillview Airport had vending machines, a pilot's lounge and break room. Santa Clara County passed a new law stating the terminal would no longer allow unhealthy food or drinks to be sold inside. This meant that coffee and all the vending machines that used to be there would no longer exist in the terminal. Now, all that remains is a water drinking fountain and bathrooms. However, there is still a seating area inside the terminal.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Reid–Hillview Airport of Santa Clara County". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2009-05-04.
  2. ^ "National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems (NPIAS) Reports". Federal Aviation Administration. Retrieved 2008-02-22.
  3. ^ "A Brief History of Reid–Hillview Airport". Nice Air Aviation. Retrieved 2008-02-22.
  4. ^ "Watsonville's Airports: Past – Present – Future". Watsonville Airport. Archived from the original on February 21, 1999. Retrieved 2008-02-29.
  5. ^ "MTC Awards: Grand Award". Metropolitan Transportation Commission. 2007-03-22. Archived from the original on 2008-05-11. Retrieved 2008-02-29.
  6. ^ Aerial Avionics
  7. ^ AeroDynamic Aviation
  8. ^ Air Accord
  9. ^ The Flying 20's
  10. ^ Nice Air Aviation
  11. ^ San Jose Fuel Company
  12. ^ Squadron 2 Flying Club
  13. ^ Trade Winds Aviation
  14. ^ Victory Aero Maintenance
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ (PDF). County of Santa Clara Retrieved 23 September 2020. Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links[edit]