EBACE Convention News

Bangor’s airport hopes to be Main(e) U.S. stop

 - May 6, 2009, 7:09 AM

Maine’s Bangor International Airport is receiving growing numbers of European business aircraft. It is now trying to capitalize on its convenient location as a U.S. port-of-entry by making its first appearance at the EBACE show with its own stand-alone exhibit (Booth No. 698).

The airport, which is municipally owned and operated, has been represented at previous shows as part of the Exxon-Avitat FBO network. But, given its increasing use by business aircraft operators, Bangor International’s executives thought the time was right for their own display. “Europe is a growing niche for us,” said airport assistant director Tony Caruso. “It is a big business, which obviously blends well with the decision to exhibit now at EBACE.”  

In the face of a declining U.S. economy, Bangor suffered a recent drop off in overall traffic. However, over the last year it has experienced a 15-percent increase in business aviation movements.

The airport, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary, sits on the site of a former U.S. Air Force base. Once home to B-52 bombers, it boasts one of the longest runways in the U.S. at 11,440 feet, capable of accommodating the gargantuan Antonov 225 freighter. “Basically, if it flies we can handle it,” Caruso told EBACE Convention News.

In addition to handling regularly scheduled airline traffic, Bangor is the closest official U.S. port-of-entry for foreign flights crossing the Atlantic Ocean from the east. The airport offers 24-hour customs and immigration services.

Bangor also operates its own FBO–Bangor Aviation Services–which features plentiful ramp space, with landing and ramp fees charged only for aircraft weighing more than 12,500 pounds. Heated and cold hangar space sufficient to park aircraft sized up to a Boeing 727 is also available with 24 hours’ notice.

“We do everything from basic corporate general aviation to international turns, and we can do air cargo or technical stops,” said Caruso. “Obviously, we have scheduled and charter passenger service here as well, so we’re fully versed in full-service ground handling both above and below wing.” The FBO’s repair station, which provides ETOPS checks upon request, is FAA/JAA certified and has licensed A&P mechanics available around the clock.

In terms of ground support, Bangor Aviation Services’ 24/7 handling services include fuel, ground power units, air starts, lavatory and water service, aircraft cleaning, preheats and airside catering.