CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The new Air Task Force created by city manager Peter Zanoni has one goal in mind: to increase the amount of traffic that goes in and out of Corpus Christi International Airport.
"This is an opportunity to try and make things better for our community and better for our businesses," John Larue, a member of the task force and current President of the Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce, said.
One of the issues that has plagued the Corpus Christi International Airport, is the amount of "leaking" from the area to different hubs in the area. People find themselves choosing to drive to an such as San Antonio or Austin for a variety of reasons. One person traveling told us it comes down to flight certainty.
"You have more variety and more choices," Orlando Guerra said. "There are more direct flights."
The task force believes that the time is now for Corpus Christi to expand its airport traffic due to the economic growth taking place in the city, and the amount of companies that are opening jobs in the Coastal Bend.
"Exxon, Savik, even Steel Dynamics are bringing in a lot of employees from across the country," Zanoni said. "That is definitely adding to the utilization of our airport."
As economic development continues to grow in Corpus Christi, the task force sees the need to expand traffic through the airport as imperative. They need to capitalize on the situation.
"If we do not have air links to different parts of the country on a regular basis, on an affordable basis and a reliable basis then that is going to be a limiting factor on the economy here," said Iain Vasaey of the Air Service Task Force.
We contacted Southwest Airlines in regard to the high price of flights out of Corpus Christi. They responded by saying all they could tell us is that price is determined by market conditions.
The first step to increasing traffic through CCIA will be lowering prices.