— Alaska Airlines (@AlaskaAir) May 17, 2017
Here’s one way Alaska Airlines is dealing with the fact that Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is reaching capacity: the carrier is going to begin operating some flights out of a ‘new’ airport in the region: Paine Field – Snohomish County Airport, which is the right next to Boeing’s giant assembly plant in Everett.
While Boeing’s newly -completed aircraft and private jets use Paine Field, it currently has no commercial service.
Over the years, there has been plenty of debate about using Paine Field for this purpose, though, because it is located about 20 miles north of Seattle and about 40 miles north of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Being able to catch a flight from there would allow travelers living north of Seattle to skip what has become terrible traffic that sometimes makes getting to the airport take longer than a regional flight.
Subject to government approvals, Alaska has announced that starting in the fall of 2018 it will begin offering up to nine daily flights out of the airport.
“We’re not quite ready to share details of the routes,” says John Kirby, Alaska’s vice president of capacity planning on the airline’s blog, “But I can tell you they won’t be limited to short, regional flights. We’re talking daily, nonstop flights to some of our most popular destinations.”
Construction of a “state of the art terminal” is slated to begin in June and Alaska said it will announce routes, flight schedules and begin selling tickets early next year.