Port Authority Airports on Pace for Another Record Year in 2014

The Port Authority’s commercial airports – John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia, Stewart International and Atlantic City International – set an all-time record for passenger traffic in the first six months of this year with more than 55.7 million air travelers, 2 percent more than the previous record for the six-month period set in 2013.

The new record puts one of the world’s largest airport systems on pace for another record-breaking year in 2014. The previous annual passenger record was set last year.

Following the first quarter when regional air traffic declined slightly after several snowstorms grounded thousands of flights throughout January and February, it rebounded strongly during the second quarter with a 4.1 percent increase compared to the same period in 2013 that saw the agency’s airports handle more than 30.5 million air travelers. Year-to-date figures through June 30 show John F. Kennedy International handled nearly 25 million passengers; Newark Liberty nearly 17 million; LaGuardia more than 13 million; Atlantic City more than 600,000; and Stewart more than 150,000.

The second quarter of 2014 compared to the same period in 2013 saw strong growth from John F. Kennedy International (up 7.4 percent) while LaGuardia bounced back from a 3.2 percent decline in the first quarter to post a 3.5 percent gain in the second quarter.  Newark Liberty’s traffic was essentially flat through the first six months of the year, up 0.2 percent in the first quarter and down 0.3 percent in the second quarter.

Atlantic City International Airport, which the Port Authority began managing in mid-2013 under an agreement to focus on air service development with the South Jersey Transportation Authority, saw the strongest second-quarter growth of all airports, up 8.8 percent, thanks to the addition of new airline service in April 2014.  Stewart Airport also showed strong growth, up 6.9 percent, in the period, thanks to added flights.

“We are seeing the results of strong demand for travel from our airport in recent months, despite being constrained by slot limitations,” said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye.  “We are investing billions of dollars to improve our airports, allowing us to generate employment opportunities and drive economic growth in the New York-New Jersey region.”

“Record passenger traffic at our airports underscores the need for continued investments that keep us in stride with the steady pace of growth,” said Port Authority Deputy Executive Director Deb Gramiccioni. “Investing $8 billion in major redevelopment initiatives at the region’s airports over the next 10 years will not only ensure future economic growth, but will also reinforce our position as the leading regional and international aviation hub.”

The previous first-half record was set in 2013, when the airport system handled 54.6 million passengers.  The Port Authority’s airport system set an all-time mark with more than 112.5 million passengers in 2013.

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