Oil Boom Leads to Airport Boom in North Dakota - Topic A: Energy
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October 24, 2014

Oil Boom Leads to Airport Boom in North Dakota

The Wall St. Journal reports that “Sloulin Field International Airport [in Williston, ND] wasn’t built to be one of the fastest-growing airports in the world, but it is now. Traffic last year was 254% higher than just two years earlier. Airlines fly in with jets weighing twice as much as what the runway was built for. And when the parking lot is full, cars are left in ditches and on the sides of roads.”

The piece continues: “the Bakken oil bonanza has brought jobs and wealth to western North Dakota. With that have come workers and airlines to transport them. Small cities that used to have just a handful of turboprop commercial flights now have regional jets in and out all day long, and some have larger Boeing and Airbus planes popping in, too. Planes are packed, fares are high and airports are scrambling to find ways to grow more.”

“Most U.S. small cities and towns bemoan sharp reductions in airline flights, making it harder for their communities to attract new factories and businesses without jet service. But if there is oil, airlines will find all kinds of ways to get in and out of tiny airports.”

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