$1M raised for new airline in Humboldt County


A $1 million fundraising goal was reached Friday, Dec. 7 to attract another airline to the Arcata/Eureka Airport in McKinleyville, the Redwood Region Economic Development Commission announced.

The commission said in a press release that the money will go toward supporting a new air carrier, which would fly to a new hub airport, until that new route is "self supporting." United Airlines, the county’s lone carrier, flies to San Francisco International Airport.

The release said RREDC and Humboldt County are now "actively recruiting airlines," and want to have a new service in place by 2013.

Ticket prices shot up when Horizon stopped flying out of Arcata, and the commission said it hopes bringing back a second carrier would reduce prices for residents - and convince more to fly again.

About 50,000 fewer passengers fly out of the airport now, the release states, which results in a loss of about $5 million to the community.

The $1 million raised came from the Department of Transportation, the Headwaters Fund, and from more than 70 local donors, including businesses, tribes, individuals, and local governments. The total local contribution was $250,000, the release said.