New Service To Follow Safety Upgrades
WORCESTER – Worcester Regional Airport is expanding once again with JetBlue Airway’s plans for new flight service from Worcester to New York City’s JFK Airport.
The new flights will begin as soon as Worcester Regional Airport’s owner Massport completes a new state-of-the-art $30 million Category III instrument landing system. That FAA-operated system will allow for the long sought ability to land aircraft in low visibility conditions.
In making the announcement at Worcester Regional Airport on Feb. 28, JetBlue Director of Airports Scott Link says his company has a long flight path in Worcester dating back to 2004, while crediting low fares and strong customer service as the core ingredients for continued growth. The service will feature the Embraer 190 Aircraft that can accommodate up 100 passengers in two-by-two layout rows with full in-air amenities.
Link adds the new airport enhancements will pave the way for additional service, with the non-stop NYC flights expected to make daily trips, accessing more than 70 airlines that operate out of JFK. New York City is JetBlue’s largest focus city, with the carrier offering up to 175 daily national and international departures.
Timothy P. Murray, president and CEO of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce who filed legislation to help save the beleaguered airport as lieutenant governor, calls the announcement another major milestone for the city. He cites a recent Department of Transportation economic impact study that found the airport contributed $46.4 million to the regional economy. “If you study regions that are vibrant and growing, it’s because their transportation systems are functional and dependable, and create linkages of contacts to other regions,” says Murray, adding that Massport has been a steadfast and committed partner. “When you have a company like JetBlue that comes here, it sends a signal and adds opportunities for our economy to grow further.”
Another long-time local airport champion, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, spoke at JetBlue’s announcement along with City Manager Edward Augustus, Worcester County Sheriff Lew Evangelidis, Massport CEO Thomas Glynn, and Massport Chairman Michael Angelini. Polito cited a February 2017 ranking by US News & World Report that lists Massachusetts as the number one state in the country to live.
“More people are earning a good living here in the Commonwealth,” says Polito. “This took a lot of planning and follow through and bi-partisan leadership.”
The Worcester Regional Airport first opened in 1946 and has been providing commercial aviation services for more than 70 years. Follow Twitter @FlyWorcester for updates on when NYC service will begin.