Survey provides reminder of economic power of Louisville’s airports
In normal times, Louisville’s airports are responsible for some 82,723 jobs across the region and have an annual economic impact of around $10.4 billion, according to their latest economic impact survey.
Key drivers of the local economy, the Kentucky city’s airports – Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport (SDF) and Bowman Field (LOU) – also usually contribute around $450 million in state and local taxes.
“These figures show that our airports are an essential asset to our local community and regional economy,” said Dale Boden, chair of the Louisville Regional Airport Authority Board, which operates and manages both airports.
“Even as our industry evolves amid the challenges of the global pandemic, both of Louisville’s airports are looking ahead to ensure that we are prepared for the future and continue to serve the community and region.”
The latest survey reveals that SDF and LOU continue to be one of the largest private employment centres in the area, with nearly one in every eight jobs in Louisville Metro due to the direct or indirect operations at both airports.
The two facilities are also responsible for generating nearly $1 in every $7 of tax revenue in Louisville Metro.
“We’ve always known that Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport is a critical economic driver for the city, and this study really brings that home,” said Louisville mayor, Greg Fischer.
“Our city thanks the Louisville Regional Airport Authority staff for their work, including their great partnership with UPS Worldport, which is another huge boost to our city’s economy and to our prospects for the future.”
UPS, the largest business partner for the Louisville Regional Airport Authority, calls SDF home of Worldport, the largest automated package handling facility in the world and centrepiece of their worldwide air network.
“Almost 400 UPS flights arrive and depart from Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport every day,” states UPS air district vice president, Jeff Simonic.
“As our main international air hub, SDF plays a critical role in allowing us to serve our customers around the world. The airport also has enabled our growth, and UPS now contributes more than 25,000 jobs to the region.”
The study also showed that during calendar year 2018, capital improvement projects at both facilities directly and indirectly employed more than 3,300 individuals and provided $18.68 million in total local and state tax collections.
“These on-going improvements and detailed projects to both Louisville Muhammad Ali International and Bowman Field are critical now to make sure we are prepared moving forward,” noted Boden.
The study, conducted by Meench & Shanker, LLC, assessed the sum of business activities directly related to operations at both airports and the spending of visitors for calendar year 2018 to determine the total contribution of all aviation-related economic activity.
Additional activity is included that is only made possible by the presence of civil aviation in Louisville.
The Louisville Renaissance Zone Corporation, a sister organisation to the airport authority with its 680-acre business park was also included in this study.