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Air Service To Denver Expected To Return To Sioux City Airport In October

The city council approved a resolution allowing the airport director to launch a contract with SkyWest Airlines.

The Sioux City Council took the first step Monday in bringing a Denver flight back to the local airport.

The city council during its Monday meeting approved a resolution allowing the airport director to launch a contract with SkyWest Airlines.

According to city documents, SkyWest will bring in a daily roundtrip flight between Sioux Gateway Airport and Denver International Airport. The flight would be branded as United Express. Councilwoman Julie Schoenherr said she thinks people who live in and near Sioux City will enjoy the service. Flights into the city from Denver will also benefit the region, she said.

“Even more importantly, it may be beneficial to Siouxland for those wanting to come here … both family and friends coming in, business partners and perhaps potential businesses who may want to have an office or a home base here,” Schoenherr said.

Mayor Pro Tem Dan Moore said he is also excited about it.

“It will have a great impact on a lot of communities in the Siouxland area,” Moore said.

Moore said it’s been “a long time coming.” The city last had flights to Denver three times a week in 2014. Frontier Airlines made its first flight to Denver out of the Sioux Gateway Airport in June that year, but four months later the airline ended the service, calling it a seasonal shutdown.

A spokeswoman for Sioux City said in an email to IPR that “enplanement was strong” on the Frontier flights. Melissa Uhl, an administrative assistant with the airport, provided monthly passenger statistics for July through October 2014 when Frontier serviced Sioux City. Flights ranged from 84 percent full to 93 percent full in those months.

Flight service is expected to run from Oct. 1 of this year to Feb. 28, 2022, but could be extended, according to city documents. The total cost is estimated at $1.2 million. The U.S. Department of Transportation will fund $600,000 towards the project, while the city will contribute $360,000. Surrounding communities and other local support will contribute $240,000 to the project. Additionally, Sioux City will provide $70,000 of marketing value to help promote the service and waive rent and landing fees over the course of the agreement.

After Monday's approval, city staff will begin discussing details to get things in motion for the targeted Oct. 1 start date.

Sioux Gateway Airport currently has three daily flights to Chicago and one daily flight to Dallas/Fort Worth.