Allegiant is planning to establish a new two-aircraft base at Gerald R. Ford international Airport in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in an investment of more than $42 million.

The new base of operations will house two Airbus aircraft, and the company plans to begin its base operations at Gerald R. Ford International Airport on 4 June 2019.

Grand Rapids will become the airline’s 16th aircraft base, and will allow Allegiant to expand its service to and from the city.

“Grand Rapids has been a great city for Allegiant, with solid demand and steady growth over the years,” said Keith Hansen, vice-president of government affairs for Allegiant. “It’s a perfect location for a permanent base, where having locally-based aircraft and crews will open a world of opportunity to expand options for both new service and operational hours. This will make travel even more convenient and affordable for both residents and visitors to the area, and further establish Allegiant as a hometown airline for Grand Rapids.”

The airline also announced service to two new cities beginning in June; Nashville, Tennessee and Savannah, Georgia. The new seasonal routes will operate twice weekly.

Allegiant began operating at the airport in 2009 and with this announcement, now offers nine non-stop routes, the airline currently carries more than 300,000 annual passengers through Grand Rapids.

Birgit Klohs, president and CEO, The Right Place, Inc. and member of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority Board called the decision “a big win for the region” and added that it will have: “A ripple effect through our economy beyond the initial jobs and investment.”

“The team here at GRR is excited that Allegiant has made the decision to establish a base at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport,” said Brian Picardat, interim president & CEO, Gerald R. Ford International Airport. “This will bring additional jobs to West Michigan and more travel options for passengers. Thank you to the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and The Right Place for their assistance in bringing this base to Grand Rapids.”

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