T. F. Green Airport

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T. F. Green Airport
Theodore Francis Green
Memorial State Airport
T.F. Green Airport Logo.jpg
Airport type Public
Owner State of Rhode Island
Operator Rhode Island Airport Corporation
Serves Providence, and Warwick
Location 2000 Post Road
Warwick, Rhode Island
Elevation AMSL 55 ft / 17 m
Coordinates 41°43′26″N 071°25′42″W / 41.72389°N 71.42833°W / 41.72389; -71.42833Coordinates: 41°43′26″N 071°25′42″W / 41.72389°N 71.42833°W / 41.72389; -71.42833
Website www.pvdairport.com
PVD is located in Rhode Island
PVD is located in the US
Location of airport in Rhode Island/United States
Direction Length Surface
ft m
5/23 7,166 2,184 Asphalt
16/34 6,081 1,853 Asphalt
Statistics (2009, 2014)
Aircraft operations (2014) 74,280
Passengers (2014) 3,566,769
Based aircraft (2009) 71

T. F. Green Airport (officially Theodore Francis Green Memorial State Airport)[2] (IATA: PVDICAO: KPVDFAA LID: PVD) is a public international airport in Warwick, six miles (10 km) south of Providence, in Kent County, Rhode Island, United States. Opened in 1931, the airport was named for former Rhode Island governor and longtime senator Theodore F. Green. Rebuilt in 1996,[3] the renovated main terminal was named for former Rhode Island governor Bruce Sundlun. It was the first state-owned airport in the United States.[4]

It is included in the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2017–2021, in which it is categorized as a small hub primary commercial service facility.[5]

T. F. Green Airport is a regional airport serving the FAA's New England Region within the FAA System Plan.[6] Along with two other regional airports, Worcester Regional Airport and Manchester Regional Airport, T. F. Green is considered a reliever airport to Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts.[7] The airport is the largest and most active airport among the six operated by the Rhode Island Airport Corporation (RIAC).


T. F. Green Airport was dedicated on September 27, 1931, as Hillsgrove State Airport, drawing what was, at that time, the largest crowd that had attended a public function in the country.[4] In 1933 the Rhode Island State Airport Terminal was built on Airport Road, then called Occupatuxet Road.[8] In 1938, the airport got its current name. At that time it had three 3,000-ft concrete runways.

The Army Air Force took control from 1942 to 1945, using it for flight training.[4] The February 1947 diagram shows runways 5, 10 and 16 all 4000 ft long; in April 1951 runway 5 was 5000 ft and 5R was under construction. A few years later 5R was 5466 ft which it remained until extended to 6466 ft around 1967.

The April 1957 OAG shows 26 weekday departures: 11 Eastern, 10 American, 4 United and one National. Nonstops did not reach beyond Boston and Newark until 1959 when Eastern started a DC-7B nonstop to Washington, which was the longest until United started Cleveland in 1968 and Chicago in 1970 and Eastern started Miami in 1969 and Atlanta in 1970. The first jets were Mohawk BAC-111s in 1966.

President Richard Nixon made a campaign stop at the airport on the night of Friday, November 3, 1972.[9] A crowd of 10,000 watched as Nixon, standing on the steps of Air Force One, urged voters to support Republican candidates Herbert F. DeSimone for Governor and John Chafee for U.S. Senator.[9] (Both lost, though Chafee later won the office in 1976).

Air Force One again touched down at Green airport on August 30, 1975, this time carrying President Gerald Ford, en route to a fundraiser in Newport.[10] He was greeted by a crowd of about 1,500 supporters,[10] as well as local politicians including Governor Philip W. Noel, Senator John O. Pastore, and Providence Mayor Buddy Cianci.[11]

A new terminal opened on Post Road; in the 1990s it was rebuilt, expanding to 18 gates, and in 1997 four gates were added. Airlines added flights to T. F. Green Airport, including Air Canada,[12] Southwest,[13] SATA International (which operated flights to the Azores using an A310-300),[14] and Spirit Airlines.[15]

After the September 11th attacks, T. F. Green Airport, like most airports in the United States, faced a decrease in passengers and fewer flights from American Airlines (which once flew to Chicago O'Hare and Dallas-Fort Worth Airport), Spirit, and SATA. Until the 2015 finalization of the merger between American Airlines and US Airways, creating one single licensed carrier under the American Airlines name, the Providence Metropolitan Area was the largest MSA in the United States not served by American Airlines or any of its subsidiaries.

Since the HNTB-designed Bruce Sundlun Terminal opened in 1996, T. F. Green became more congested due to increased traffic and post-9/11 security changes.[16] Renovations followed, including expansion of baggage rooms to accommodate a new In-Line Explosive Detection System (EDS) Baggage Handling System, expanded security screening checkpoints, more concessions and ticket counters, and expansion of RIAC offices on the second and third floors.[17]

Although T. F. Green's longest runway is 7,166 feet (2,184 m), the airport has seen several wide-body jets. Cheaper fees at T. F. Green make it an appealing choice for sports teams and entertainers visiting the area.

In 2009 the airport had 83,016 aircraft operations, average 227 per day: 52% scheduled commercial, 24% air taxi, 23% general aviation and <1% military. 71 aircraft were then based at this airport: 77% single-engine, 5% multi-engine, 17% jet and 1% helicopter.[1]

T. F. Green was again visited by Air Force One, a Boeing 747, on October 25, 2010,[18] a Concorde operated by British Airways on June 13, 1988,[19] and an Airbus A340 flown by Iberia Airlines on June 1, 2011, which transported the Men's Spanish National Soccer Team for their match against the U.S. National Team on June 4, 2011, at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts.[20] T. F. Green was visited by Air Force One again on October 31, 2014.[21] Norwegian Air Shuttle is to start new, Trans-Atlantic flights to Europe.[22]

In 2011, T. F. Green handled about 3,852,000 passengers.[23] The mainline airline with the largest presence at T. F. Green is Southwest, which carried 50.77% of all passengers for the 12-month period ending June 30, 2012, followed by US Airways with 14.11%.[23] T. F. Green also handled over 26,000,000 pounds (12,000,000 kg) of cargo and mail.[23]


Terminal lobby
Aerial view as of 2004


The airport's terminal, named for former Rhode Island governor Bruce Sundlun (Sundlun died on July 21, 2011)[24] has two concourses, North and South. The South Concourse has eight gates and the North Concourse has 14. Gate 8 is designed for international arrivals; it is directly connected to customs, which is on the lower level of the concourse. The terminal contains a number of stores and restaurants, and a central food court.

Runways and apron[edit]

Theodore Francis Green State Airport covers 1,111 acres (450 ha) at an elevation of 55 feet (17 m) above mean sea level. It has two asphalt runways: 5/23 is 7,166 by 150 feet (2,184 x 46 m) and 16/34 is 6,081 by 150 feet (1,853 x 46 m).[1] ILS is available for runways 5, 23, and 34, with runway 5 being certified for CAT III Instrument Landing. The other runways with ILS are certified for CAT I.[25] Taxiway Victor was Runway 5L/23R until 2003.

Runway expansion[edit]

The Rhode Island Airport Corporation (RIAC) writes (in 2001)[26] that the master plan completed in 1997 failed to envision the "tremendous growth" that had been experienced. The report identifies lack of runway length as a hindrance to "range and diversity of service", in particular emphasizing ability to reach non-hub cities, the west coast, and international locations. A challenge for T. F. Green is the residential and commercial development around it. Many residents oppose expansion.[27] Current plans call for runway 5–23 to be extended to 8,700 feet (2,700 m)[28] in order to allow T. F. Green to service nonstop flights to Western Europe and to bring back service to the Western United States.[29]

While some expansion proponents claim extending the main runway would bring in an estimated $138 million over 13 years, doing so could consume 204 houses, at least ten businesses, and large areas of wetlands. More recent studies indicate substantially decreased enplanements due in-part to soaring fuel costs, and easier access to Logan International Airport since completion of improvements to the Southeast Expressway, Third Harbor Tunnel, bus services between T. F. Green and Logan, as well as the introduction of low cost carriers at Logan such as JetBlue.[30]

The Rhode Island Airport Corporation owns some residential property on the eastern side of the airport near the Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting building. Most homes on Cedar Swamp Road and Pembroke Avenue have since been demolished, likely to make way for future expansion.[31]

On March 1, 2012 TF Green Airport was given the go-ahead to expand the runway and improve the safety of the secondary runway. The Warwick City Council unanimously voted to approve the expansion, and drop the suit against the RIAC. President Obama signed a bill saying the project will be federally funded. The project will take approximately 2–3 years.[32]

Airlines and destinations[edit]


Airlines Destinations Concourse
American Airlines Charlotte, Philadelphia, Washington–National South
American Eagle Charlotte, Chicago–O'Hare, Philadelphia, Washington–National South
Azores Airlines Seasonal: Ponta Delgada, Porto (begins June 2, 2017)[33] South
Delta Air Lines Atlanta, Detroit North
Delta Connection Seasonal: Atlanta, Detroit North
JetBlue Airways Fort Lauderdale, Orlando North
Southwest Airlines Baltimore, Chicago–Midway, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa, Washington–National
Seasonal: Fort Myers, West Palm Beach
TACV Praia South
United Airlines Seasonal: Chicago–O'Hare North, South
United Express Chicago–O'Hare, Newark
Seasonal: Washington–Dulles
North, South


Airlines Destinations
FedEx Express Fort Wayne, Memphis
FedEx Feeder
operated by Wiggins Airways
Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard
UPS Airlines Hartford
Seasonal: Albany (NY), Buffalo, Louisville, Newark, Philadelphia

International Service[edit]

From the 1990s to 2013, T. F. Green Airport had regular service to Toronto-Pearson via Air Georgian dba Air Canada,[34] and SATA International is resuming seasonal service to the Azores, having previously offered service until 2010.[35] In 2015, service was announced to Frankfurt, Germany and Praia, in the Cape Verde Islands by Condor and TACV respectively. The service to Frankfurt marked the first non-stop route to mainland Europe. The flight to Frankfurt was subsequently suspended by Condor.[36] T.F. Green is considered an airport of entry and has a full-service customs. The Rhode Island Airport Corporation expects international service to increase after expansion of its main runway is complete.

Norwegian Air[edit]

On Monday February 6, 2017, USA Today announced that Norwegian Air Shuttle confirmed that PVD had been selected as its base for flights to Europe.[37] Norwegian Air Shuttle intends to use its new Boeing 737MAX planes, due to arrive in mid 2017, for flights from Providence to destinations in Europe [38]. At this time, no official route announcements have been made but service is expected to begin Summer 2017.


Top destinations[edit]

Busiest domestic routes from PVD
(Nov 2015 - Oct 2016)[23]
Rank Airport Passengers Carriers
1 Baltimore, Maryland 310,000 Southwest
2 Orlando, Florida 283,000 JetBlue, Southwest
3 Charlotte, North Carolina 182,000 American
4 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 139,000 American
5 Atlanta, Georgia 132,000 Delta
6 Chicago–Midway, Illinois 128,000 Southwest
7 Fort Lauderdale, Florida 116,000 JetBlue, Southwest
8 Washington–National, D.C. 100,000 American
9 Tampa, Florida 95,000 Southwest
10 Detroit, Michigan 87,000 Delta

Annual traffic[edit]

Traffic by calendar year[39]
Passengers Change from previous year Aircraft operations Cargo tonnage[40]
2002 5,509,186
2003 5,393,574 Decrease04.03%
2004 5,509,186 Increase06.43% 38,420,118
2005 5,730,557 Increase04.02% 118,436 38,497,744
2006 5,203,396 Decrease09.20% 45,727,608
2007 5,019,342 Decrease03.54% 100,693 44,185,658
2008 4,692,974 Decrease06.50% 92,045 30,444,992
2009 4,328,741 Decrease07.76% 83,016 21,017,341
2010 3,936,423 Decrease09.06% 81,571 21,859,591
2011 3,883,548 Decrease01.34% 80,597 22,856,687
2012 3,650,737 Decrease05.99% 76,491 24,204,472
2013 3,803,586 Increase04.19% 79,550 25,172,169
2014 3,566,769 Decrease06.23% 74,280 27,334,069
2015 3,566,105 Decrease00.02% 65,061 27,040,498
2016 3,653,029 Increase02.44% 70,088 27,718,271

Ground transportation[edit]

Commuter rail[edit]

MBTA station at the airport

The MBTA commuter rail service to and from downtown Providence and Boston commenced on December 6, 2010 and was expanded on November 14, 2011.[41] Service was expanded south to Wickford Junction in April 2012.[42] There are ten weekday trains to Wickford Junction and ten to Providence, most of which continue on to Boston with local stops along the way. Travel time to South Station in Boston about 85 minutes, while the travel times to both Providence and to Wickford Junction are about 15 minutes. Amtrak has formally stated they will not stop at the station for the foreseeable future citing a lack of economical feasibility.[citation needed]


T. F. Green Airport has direct access to I-95 via the T. F. Green Airport Connector Road, a 1.1-mile (1.8 km) freeway. The airport is served by major car rental companies as well as by local taxi and limousine services.


The Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA) offers public bus transportation to and from the cities of Providence (Kennedy Plaza in downtown Providence) and Newport. In particular:[43]

  • The No. 20 bus goes to Kennedy Plaza by way of Elmwood and Roger Williams Park and Zoo, and takes approximately 40 minutes.
  • The No. 14 bus goes directly to and from Kennedy Plaza and takes approximately 20–25 minutes; it also connects to Newport, Narragansett, and East Greenwich.
  • The No. 1 Bus goes to Kennedy Plaza by way of Eddy Street stopping at Rhode Island Hospital and takes about 35 minutes. The No. 1 Bus continues thru to the East Side of Providence down Hope Street and into Pawtucket via East Ave.

Intermodal station[edit]

An intermodal station, completed in October 2010, includes an elevated walkway to the terminal, a rental car garage, and commuter rail parking.

Accidents and incidents[edit]

1999 runway incursion[edit]

On December 6, 1999 at approximately 8:35pm Eastern Standard Time, a runway incursion occurred involving United Airlines flight 1448 (a Boeing 757) and FedEx Express flight 1662 (a Boeing 727) on Runway 5R/23L.[44] Shortly after landing on Runway 5R, United 1448 was instructed by the air traffic control tower to taxi to the gate, part of the instructions including crossing Runway 16. Due to the low-visibility conditions that night, the pilots became disoriented and turned down the wrong taxiway, which led them back towards the active runway they had just arrived on. The tower controller, unaware of United's mistake, cleared FedEx 1662 for takeoff on Runway 5R. United 1448 then confirmed with the controller that they should cross the runway in front of them (neither party aware that they were in fact not near Runway 16) and the aircraft continued moving towards Runway 5R/23L.

United 1448 sounding confused then radioed that they were near taxiway Kilo, and as they re-entered Runway 5R/23L, reported that "somebody just took off" overhead, referring to FedEx 1662 that had indeed just become airborne in very close proximity to the United aircraft. However, the controller appeared not to take this seriously, stating, "you shouldn't be anywhere near Kilo", and advised the United 1448 crew to hold position. United 1448 then informed the tower that they were now on an active runway, which they mistakenly believed to be 23R/5L (inactive at the time). A moment later the pilot corrected himself, stating that they were on 5R/23L. United 1448's crew was told again to stand by, so the aircraft remained idle at the intersection of the active runway, while the controller cleared MetroJet 2998 for takeoff on the same runway. The United 1448 pilot immediately interjected to insist that the plane was on the active runway, to which the controller belligerently denied telling them it was not an active runway. Meanwhile, the MetroJet pilot having heard the exchange realized there was confusion over the whereabouts of United 1448 and refused the takeoff clearance stating, "We're staying clear of all runways until we figure this out".

Despite all this confusion, the controller again cleared MetroJet 2998 for take off on Runway 5R. They again refused to accept the clearance for take-off until the United 1448 was confirmed to have arrived at the gate. Once United 1448 was confirmed to be at the gate, MetroJet 2998 finally departed on Runway 5R.

The US Airways crew operating Flight 2998 were praised by a US Air spokesperson for their actions of avoiding a near-disaster. An investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board followed and while no fault was assigned to the controller, she was required to undergo retraining before returning to service. The pilots were debriefed by United, received additional training and were returned to service.[45]

Part of the confusion was United 1448's inability to correctly identify the runway they were on. During the radio exchanges, United 1448 refers to 23L/5R as 23R/5L and vice versa. Runway 23R/5L has been closed since this incident and is now taxiway V.

2007 CRJ accident[edit]

On December 16, 2007, Air Wisconsin (US Airways Express) flight 3758, a CRJ-200 arriving from Philadelphia, departed the left side of runway 5 after a hard landing by an unstabilized approach.[46] Although the aircraft sustained substantial damage, none of the 31 passengers and crew aboard were injured.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c FAA Airport Master Record for PVD (Form 5010 PDF), effective July 2, 2009.
  2. ^ T. F. Green International Airport
  3. ^ Providence: Transportation – Approaching the City
  4. ^ a b c "History". Rhode Island Airport Corporation. 2011. Retrieved May 25, 2011. 
  5. ^ "List of NPIAS Airports" (PDF). FAA.gov. Federal Aviation Administration. 21 October 2016. Retrieved 27 November 2016. 
  6. ^ "New England Region Airports Division: Regional Airport System Plan". Federal Aviation Administration. December 2, 2010. Retrieved May 25, 2011. 
  7. ^ "The New England Regional Airport System Plan" (PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. 2006. pp. 50–51. Retrieved March 3, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Where is the Comet? Theodore Francis Green Airport, Warwick, RI". The Magic World of Comet. 2000. Retrieved May 25, 2011. —In 1931 Hillsgrove State Airport, on Airport Road, then called Occupatuxet Road, opened, the first state-owned and operated in the United State
  9. ^ a b Stanton, Mike (9 December 2002). "A Providence civics lesson". The Providence Journal. Retrieved 28 November 2016. 
  10. ^ a b "POOL REPORT 115--Theodore Green Airport to the Sheraton-Islander in Newport, R. I." (PDF). Gerald Ford Library. Ford Presidential Library. Retrieved 28 December 2016. 
  11. ^ "Daily Diary of President Gerald R. Ford" (PDF). Gerald Ford Library. Ford Presidential Library. 30 August 1975. p. 4. Retrieved 28 December 2016. 
  12. ^ "International Service Arrives at T. F. Green". The Providence Journal. October 5, 1997. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  13. ^ Munroe, Tony (June 6, 1996). "Southwest to Start Service to Providence". Boston Herald. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  14. ^ Downing, Neil (February 14, 2006). "Azores Wooing RI Travelers". The Providence Journal. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  15. ^ Barmann, Timothy C. (August 20, 2004). "Spirit Airlines Lifts Rhode Island Airport". The Providence Journal. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  16. ^ T. F. Green Airport Modernization
  17. ^ "T. F. Green Improvement Project update!". Rhode Island Airport Corporation. July 15, 2006. Archived from the original on August 27, 2006. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  18. ^ "President Obama lands in Rhode Island". WPRI. Providence. October 25, 2010. Retrieved May 25, 2011. 
  19. ^ Mingis, Ken; Lord, Peter; Emery, Jr., C. Eugene; DePaul, Tony (June 13, 1988). "Concorde Has Come and Gone; for Most, It Was Good Experience". The Providence Journal. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  20. ^ "Iberia A340-300 Landing at KPVD". FlightAware. June 1, 2011. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Pres. Obama arrives in RI ahead of RIC event". WPRI. October 31, 2014. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  22. ^ http://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/flights/todayinthesky/2016/12/07/norwegian-air-low-cost-carrier-newburgh-stewart-airport-portsmouth-providence-portsmouth-737-max-base/95085448/
  23. ^ a b c d "Providence, RI: Theodore Francis Green (PVD)". Bureau of Transportation Statistics. January 2016. Retrieved February 1, 2016. 
  24. ^ Bruce Sundlun
  25. ^ "KPVD: Theodore Francis Green State Airport". FAA Information. Airnav.com. May 5, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011. 
  26. ^ "Airport Master Plan Guiding Principles" (PDF). Rhode Island Airport Corporation, Landrum & Brown. February 5, 2001. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 6, 2009. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  27. ^ Needham, Cynthia (February 12, 2009). "Expand T. F. Green Airport's Main Runway, R.I. House Speaker Says". The Providence Journal. Retrieved June 7, 2011. 
  28. ^ "Level 6 Alternative B4" (PDF). Rhode Island Airport Corporation. 2011. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  29. ^ Nesi, Ted (May 27, 2009). "T. F. Green runway plan gets FAA OK". Providence Business News. Retrieved June 6, 2011. 
  30. ^ Needham, Cynthia (March 10, 2007). "Runway Plan Takes Jomes, Businesses". The Providence Journal. Retrieved March 10, 2007. 
  31. ^ "TF Green Airport (PVD, KPVD), Warwick, Rhode Island, USA". Airport-Technology. 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011. 
  32. ^ "Green light for TF Green Expansion". WPRI. Providence. 2012. Retrieved March 1, 2012. 
  33. ^ http://turnto10.com/news/local/only-on-10-sata-azores-airlines-expands-service-from-tf-green-and-logan-airports
  34. ^ http://airlineroute.net/2013/01/21/ac-yyzpvd-mar13/
  35. ^ http://turnto10.com/news/local/sata-to-expand-presence-offer-flights-from-providence-to-azores
  36. ^ http://www.providencejournal.com/news/20161003/condor-airlines-cuts-its-international-flights-to-ri
  37. ^ http://www.usatoday.com/story/travel/flights/todayinthesky/2017/02/06/norwegian-air-confirms-providence-base-europe-flights/97553278/
  38. ^ http://www.providencejournal.com/news/20170207/norwegian-air-to-start-transatlantic-service-from-green-this-summer
  39. ^ "Passenger Numbers". Rhode Island Airport Corporation. 2012. Retrieved February 14, 2012. 
  40. ^ Total cargo (Freight, Express, & Mail).
  41. ^ "Schedules and Maps: Providence/Stoughton Line". Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. 2011. Retrieved May 25, 2011. 
  42. ^ Bierman, Noah (September 10, 2009). "Vote Set on T link to R.I. Airport". The Boston Globe. Retrieved September 10, 2009. 
  43. ^ Bus route information from RIPTA's website.
  44. ^ "Planes Urged to Stop at Runway Intersections". Los Angeles Times/St. Petersburg Times. June 14, 2000. 
  45. ^ "Animations of runway incursions from Board Meeting of June 13, 2000". National Transportation Safety Board. June 13, 2000. 
  46. ^ "Probable Cause, DCA08FA018". National Transportation Safety Board. December 30, 2008. Retrieved June 7, 2011. 

External links[edit]

Media related to T. F. Green Airport at Wikimedia Commons