America West’s decision to close its hub in Columbus, Ohio, has forced it to sever its relationship with code-share partner Chautauqua Airlines. Between early April and mid-June, America West will gradually downsize the hub to a planned four mainline flights per day, a development that freed Chautauqua’s 12 Columbus-based Embraer ERJ-145s to fly as Delta Connection, starting April 1.
The U.S. airline industry last month felt the opening tremors of what could become the biggest shakeup in the business since the introduction of the regional jet. On August 15, US Airways announced a plan to fly 50- to 69-seat RJs within its mainline system, using mainline flight crews as part of a far-reaching reorganization effort.
Royal Jordanian Airlines has opted to take two 72-seat E-175 jetliners in lieu of two of seven 100-seat E-195s it ordered last year. The first of the E-175s is to be delivered in May 2008 and will feature a cabin with 60 economy-class seats and a 12-seat first-class section. The airline will deploy the new aircraft on a mix of domestic and regional routes.
Embraer has broken ground at Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Conn., for a new service center. The company intends to open the facility by
Forty-eight hours before the Regional Airline Association staged its annual convention at the Phoenix Civic Center from May 18 to 21, the season’s first 100-degree day marked the start of another long, oppressive summer in the Sonoran desert of the American Southwest.
Faced with widespread uncertainty about an industry threatened by growing regulatory burdens, the specter of increased security fees and scope-clause restrictions, the Regional Airline Association did its best to lend some perspective and a sense of harmony during its annual convention, held May 12 to 15 in Nashville, Tenn.
Indianapolis-based Republic Airways will soon issue five million shares of stock at between $14 and $16 each in its third attempt to take the company public, according to a prospectus filed last month with the SEC.
United Airlines earlier this month formally rejected its code-share contract with Atlantic Coast Airlines, freeing the Sterling, Va.-based regional to speed preparations for its launch of Independence Air–the planned new discount carrier slated to fly from Washington Dulles Airport. The long-time partners have agreed to begin the separation process on June 4 and complete the divorce by August 5.
The regional airlines became an economic safety net of sorts after September 11, when the majors quickly realized they could not survive flying large airplanes nearly empty. The options–cut flights and market presence entirely or replace mainline jets with smaller aircraft–presented airlines with a clear course of action. Code-sharing regional airliners quickly delivered cost-effective solutions.
Less than six months after Shuttle America filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the Windsor Locks, Conn.-based de Havilland Dash 8 operator signed a new code-share agreement with US Airways covering new service from Boston Hanscom Field to Philadelphia and Trenton, N.J.