Airport Numbers Soar to Record in 2012 - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Airport Numbers Soar to Record in 2012

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It was never a question of 'if' but rather, 'by how much'?

The final year end numbers for the Minot International Airport are in and they show a record year to the level nobody imagined.

More than 224-thousand people boarded flights in Minot this year smashing the high mark that was set in 2011 by about 74 thousand, a 66 percent increase.

Airport Manager Andy Solsvig said he knew the numbers would be large, in fact planning for 2012, it was thought the number would reach above 200-thousand, but not that far north of it.

(Andy Solsvig - Minot Airport Director) "Lot more than we were anticipating in fact our terminal area study forecast put us at about 201 thousand is what we had forecast, so about 10 percent more than what we had forecast."

And while it may seem like it would be more difficult to add to that record in the current facility Solsvig says he thinks it will happen.

Frontier Airlines, which started service to Denver in November, has just announced they will be flying much larger flights into Minot starting in March that adds even more seats.

Pair that with other factors like scheduling of flights, and 2013 looks to be another record breaker.

Andy Solsvig - Minot Airport Director) "Now as we look ahead to 2013 knowing what the airline schedule is thus far through spring and summer, I think we are going to stay on the same track. We anticipate the numbers flattening out, but I still think we will see and increase, possibly ten to twenty percent over 2012."

Williston also set an airport boarding record in 2012 with projections to possibly double the amount of flyers this year over last.

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