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Innovation Valley to Manage Newly Launched Competitive Airfare Partnership Initiative
By: 
Jenny Woodbery
Date: 
Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Knoxville, Tenn. – Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero and Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett held a joint press conference at McGhee Tyson Airport today to announce a regional partnership that will promote competitive airfares. The initiative, called the Competitive Airfare Partnership (CAP), is part of an Innovation Valley strategy to encourage business relocation and industrial development efforts.

 

The Partnership

• A public/private initiative that currently includes the City of Knoxville, Knox County, 

Innovation Valley, Visit Knoxville, and the Knoxville Chamber. 

• Target fundraising goal: $3 million with approximately $650,000 in commitments to date.

• First time a regional partnership approach has been taken to recruit low fare carriers to McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS) – public sector, private sector, tourism sector, and airport.

• Lower the fares by enhancing low fare service at TYS. Regional initiatives like this have been successful in other markets in the United States.

• Long-term communication strategy to remind the business community about the 

importance of supporting low fare carriers that serve TYS.

 

Situated For Success

• The Knoxville region has the population and tourism volume to support and sustain increased low fare service at TYS.

• Low fares have proven to stimulate growth in our region and directly impact the bottom line for both business and leisure travelers.

• Knoxville’s peer markets, such as Greenville and Charleston, South Carolina, have recently acquired low fare carriers like JetBlue and Southwest using a regional approach like CAP. 

 

Market Research

• Recent passenger leakage studies show that approximately 20 percent of Knoxville -area travelers are using other airports for their boarding points. 

• Based on 2012 passenger levels for Knoxville, that 20 percent represents 310,000 additional passengers or 425 departing passengers per day.

• Lower fares will stimulate the market by 10-20 percent providing another 200-400 passengers each day

 

Benefits

• Economic development as it relates to business recruitment. 

• Growing the market of visitors to Knoxville region from other parts of the country.

• Lowering of overall air fares for travel from TYS.

 

About Innovation Valley:

Innovation Valley is the regional economic development initiative centered on a 25-mile Technology Corridor with world-class resources in science, technology, and business. Experience shows that a regional approach to economic development offers the most advantages to businesses planning a corporate relocation or expansion and the communities involved. Visit www.knoxvilleoakridge.com for more information. 

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