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Old 08-22-2007, 03:04 PM
8,440 posts, read 12,632,240 times
Reputation: 6282


Crew Chief,

I've never lived in Mtn. Home, but understand there have been many changes to make it a much better experience for those who are there. I'll have to do my math, but if it is ok, I may send you a PM and ask if you knew someone I believe was stationed there around your time. (Except, he still may have been in AK, so I'll check).

I saw something yesterday that may be interesting to you, because of your time at Mountain Home and simply to anyone planning on travelling to eastern ID, or western WY and southern MT. This information may be important to those planning trips to Idaho Falls for business or to recreational destinations in "the backyard."

A local tv station reported some big, positive changes may be coming to the Idaho Falls Regional Airport, and not too far down the road.

Not only is the Idaho Falls Regional Airport looking at adding more flights, given the demand and how full current carriers are, but the possibility of adding direct flights to Chicago and cities in CA may be in the works too. These potential added flights benefit all regional residents flying to those destinations, as well as increasing businesses in the Idaho Falls area. Often it is far cheaper to land in Idaho Falls than Jackson Hole and drive (or take one of the professionally-driven services) between the two cities.

It would be great to have a direct flight from Idaho Falls to Chicago as the farthest east direct flight currently is in Minneapolis and only once daily, given Northwest Airline's "freeze" they had to not add new flights after NWA initially started service to I.F., this comes as good news! More direct flights to the Midwest would be a huge winner, IMHO.

Also, more flights and more seats may create potentially cheaper prices than currently exist flying to and from some other cities. Currently, United has to land in Denver and Delta in Salt Lake City and change planes for the last leg to Idaho Falls.

While many of us look forward to increased and exapanded air service at the IFRA, until these flights and changes in the Idaho Falls Regional Airport are official, we're happy for the 5 airlines already here and the flights they currently provide.

Anyway, if you can, please look at the video or read the transcript and see what you think. Before you visit the area again, you may be able to take a direct flight to Idaho Falls. Or, at least one that has only one plane change.

From KPVI and Reporter Ty Perry, on 8/21/07:

NewsChannel6 - New Idaho Falls Airport Director

"In April, Lenard Nelson took over as the Director of Aviation for the Idaho Falls Regional Airport, he says this airport is different from those in other smaller communities.

"Lenard Nelson, Director of Aviation, I.F.R.A.:"Flights are just running full, most of the other communities of this size have kind of seen a decrease in air travel where Idaho Falls has seen some real pressure to add flights."

"Nelson says the demand for growth comes from the community growing, the vacation destinations nearby and the booming business around the area.

"Lenard Nelson, Directo of Aviation, I.F.R.A.:"Businesses are doing well with the INL and that's a big part of the air traffic here in Idaho Falls."

"Nelson has plans to upgrade and improve the airport, beginning about a year from now with a multi-million dollar runway project.

"Lenard Nelson, Directo of Aviation, I.F.R.A.: "Next summer we're going to overlay the main runway... along with that the lights will be changed out, the taxiway will be resurfaced... and then from there we're going to look at some terminal things because were crowded in the terminal."

"Nelson also wants to add more concession stands to the terminal in an effort to make the Idaho Falls Regional Airport a more comfortable way to fly.

"Lenard Nelson, Directo of Aviation, I.F.R.A.: "That's really my overall goal is to make the passenger feel like it's an easy transition to come to Idaho Falls get on an airplane and get out of here as opposed to choosing a bigger airport."

"Nelson says the airport is looking to add several new flights including possible direct flights to California and Chicago."
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Old 08-23-2007, 01:19 PM
6,351 posts, read 20,632,768 times
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MSR, thanks for the update! That's really good news about IFRA having more flights! (there is a danger about being TOO convenient to outsiders, though, just ask the folks in Boise...)

I was delighted to see the buildup in downtown Mountain Home after we arrived. I know the city folks kept going through the boom-and-bust cycle as the Air Force closed then reopened MHAFB. (IMHO, MHAFB is one of the USAF's best-kept secrets!)

Yes, MSR, you may PM me about your friend. It's even possible that I may have known them at another assignment.
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