Veterans Airport of Southern Illinois listens to new Cape Air proposal

Marion, Ill airport to offer flights to Nashville, Tenn.

MARION, IL. (KFVS) - Southern Illinois will become much more accessible after the Veterans Airport accepts a new service proposal from one of two airlines.

Right now, the airport is looking at proposals from SkyWest and Cape Air according to Airport Director, Doug Kimmel. Cape Air has been providing service to St. Louis for the past 10 years. SkyWest would be new to the airport.

Cape Air is proposing to continue service to St. Louis, but is also vying to offer some flights to Nashville as well.

SkyWest wants to open routes to Chicago O’Hare.

On Tuesday, July 23, leaders from the region listened to representatives from Cape Air about their proposal.

“We’ve been here for ten years, and we’re hoping to continue our legacy here,” said Dan Wolf, Founder and CEO of Cape Air.

Their proposal comes with some options. Depending on what’s chosen, they are offering either 36 flights to St. Louis a week; 29 flights to St. Louis and seven to Nashville every week; or 24 flights to St. Louis and 12 to Nashville each week.

According to Kimmel, SkyWest is offering two flights a day Monday through Friday to Chicago and one on Saturday and Sunday.

The decision needs to be made and confirmed with the Department of Transportation by August 9 according to Kimmel. To give people the service they want most, he said they’re asking the public directly.

“At this point we’re letting the public, business, and civic leaders weigh in with what they think is best,” Kimmel said.

To gauge public opinion, Kimmel said the airport is taking a vote on their website. He also welcomes people to come forward with any questions, comments, and concerns.

After a decision is made, the new service will start on December 1.

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