Mikey711MN
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Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sat Jan 03, 2004 8:16 am

Minnesotans mull new airline to ensure regional service
Elizabeth Souder, Dow Jones Newswires

NEW YORK -- Airport managers and other community leaders in northern Minnesota are considering starting a new airline to ensure regional air service, which is jeopardized by threats of a strike among pilots that fly on behalf of Northwest Airlines.

Air service in Minnesota is dominated by Northwest Airlines, and state officials have long considered ways to increase competition and air service. But the situation could become severe if pilots that fly for Mair Holdings Inc.'s Mesaba Airlines go on strike, possibly wiping out service entirely to some Minnesota cities.

Mesaba, a regional carrier, operates flights to 112 airports on behalf of Northwest Airlines. And for 20 towns in the Midwest - including St. Cloud, Brainerd and Hibbing in Minnesota - Mesaba is the only provider of commercial air service. A pilot strike, which could begin Jan. 10, may wipe out that service, forcing travelers to drive hours to Minneapolis to board planes.

David Danielson, the airport manager for Chisholm-Hibbing Municipal Airport in northeast Minnesota, said he and other local people have a plan, and the necessary financing, to build a new airline for the region.

(view the rest of the Star Tribune article)
I plan on living forever. So far, so good...
 
L-188
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sat Jan 03, 2004 1:23 pm

Northwest will never allow it to happen.

They are one of the most predatory airlines out there.
OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
 
SunValley
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sat Jan 03, 2004 1:29 pm

I think one of the contigency plans by both Mesaba & NW is to send Big Sky into many of these markets.
 
as739x
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sat Jan 03, 2004 1:31 pm

I back what L-188 says. They'd be flying DC-9 and A32X into every strip they can get into. (I mean that sarcastically).They will protect, you know that!
ASSFO
"Some pilots avoid storm cells and some play connect the dots!"
 
sprxflySWA
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sat Jan 03, 2004 2:03 pm

It would turn out just like in South Dakota when they had GP Express fly to Spearfish,Pierre, Sioux Falls,etc. That did not last long because demand was low. That is probably why no one flew it to begin with.
I could see MN contracting with, say Mesa, to fly BE1900s up there. It would beat starting their own state run outfit like California had discussed years ago.
So people in St. Cloud would have to drive all the way to MSP? So what, it is only 72 freeway miles. Boy, what hardship!
Serve these cities: INL BJI HIB MKT ORT TVF BRD and maybe GPZ from MSP.
With these routes:
ORT-MKT-MSP
TVF-BJI-MSP
INL-HIB-MSP
GPZ-BRD-MSP
I think three M-F,2 SaSu flights would be sufficient.
How much would each city have to pay to get service? And how would the taxpayers respond to paying for the service?
This sort of idea seems to never panout as proponents expect. Hopefully, if they do it, they will succeed. Assuming NW doesn't pullout of any location with "MinnyAirways" service.
 
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KaiGywer
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sun Jan 04, 2004 3:07 pm

SprxflySWA, even though I totally agree with you that MKT should have air service (hey, I live there), it's also only 70 hwy miles from MSP.
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
Iflewrepublic
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sun Jan 04, 2004 3:27 pm

"State officials have long considered ways to increase competition..."

Are these the same officials that encouraged Northwest to take over Republic, Minneapolis' OTHER hometown airline, in 1986? Another airline solely serving Minnesota, as well as the rest of the upper midwest, doesn't stand a chance against Northwest. Moving Big Scare, I mean Big Sky, into that area might not help much. Labor issues between Northwest, Mesaba, and Pinnacle need to be straightened out. Should anything drastic happen to cause loss of service to those outlying communities, it will definitely be a sad day for everyone.

Let's hope something good comes of all this.

Iflewrepublic.
Aviation is proof that, given the will, we have the capacity to achieve the impossible.
 
DCA-ROCguy
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sun Jan 04, 2004 3:36 pm

Moving Big Scare, I mean Big Sky, into that area might not help much. Labor issues between Northwest, Mesaba, and Pinnacle need to be straightened out.

It might not be legal, either. When Comair pilots went on strike in 2001, their collective bargaining agreement said that Delta could not put ASA, etc. on any Comair route because that would be "strikebreaking" or something like that. There were a lot of threads about this back at the time.

NW's agreement with Mesaba probably has a similar clause. Any of our NW experts know?

In any event, neither management nor unions tend to give a rip about the people their actions affect--the "Summer of Hell" mentality of contempt for the passenger.

Finally, local or state attempts to start airlines tend to fail badly. Access Air, for instance.

Jim

Need a new airline paint scheme? Better call Saul! (Bass that is)
 
Iflewrepublic
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sun Jan 04, 2004 3:51 pm

I do know that there are a few (several) of us who do not want to cross those lines by filling routes with mainline aircraft. I can already hear the twisting of the screws.

Iflewrepublic.
Aviation is proof that, given the will, we have the capacity to achieve the impossible.
 
bigb
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sun Jan 04, 2004 5:01 pm

Are these the same officials that encouraged Northwest to take over Republic, Minneapolis' OTHER hometown airline, in 1986?

I doubt that because it is 2004. And different officials would be in office by now.
ETSN Baber, USN
 
uadc8contrail
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Sun Jan 04, 2004 5:22 pm

innocousfox,
glad to see a anti labor person in here..unless you know the details on the mesaba pilot contract state it or keep your personal thoughts to your self.......
bus driver.......move that bus:)
 
InnocuousFox
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Mon Jan 05, 2004 1:06 am

"unless you know the details on the mesaba pilot contract state it or keep your personal thoughts to your self......."

Since when is THAT a rule?
Dave Mark - Intrinsic Algorithm - Reducing the world to mathematical equations!
 
wedgetail737
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Mon Jan 05, 2004 1:50 am

Wasn't there a little regional airline flying between Brainerd or Hibbing to MSP not too long ago...after GP Express? They could always ask Great Mistakes, I mean, Great Lakes, to fly the northern MN routes.
 
PSU.DTW.SCE
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Tue Jan 06, 2004 2:11 am

Yeah, nice stupid new plan.....some people must not have any common sense.

NW and the State of MN are both in bed with each other. I hardly doubt this plan would ever work for these oh-so-popular destinations. I swear some airport managers live in a dream world. If they were to ever start/get/buy/dream/invent a new airline, they wouldn't be flying around in 34 seat Saab's, they'd be lucky to get 19-seat Metros, more likely 9-pax Cessna's. That will sure get the passengers. Then wait til NW and XJ strike back. Where is this airline gonna go? I'm sure they'll have a large network that will get the people in droves....sure.

Anyways, with the impending strike deadline, be forewarded.....IF and only IF XJ goes on strike, you will not see NW, Pinnacle, or any other regional provider picking up Mesaba routes. Remember, labor unions, my friends. They will not be flying struck work, as in the pilot circles, there is overwhelming support for the Mesaba group and their cause. Being a scab is a serious no-no in the world of unions.....
 
asmtrd
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Tue Jan 06, 2004 3:34 am

Here in Aberdeen SD we are cover by the essential air service law. If we don't have Mesaba flights then the government will have to find someone to replace them. How is NW going to protect themselves with that?
 
BeltwayBandit
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Tue Jan 06, 2004 3:49 am

If they were serious about getting competition in to the airport, they would need to give a revenue guaranty to get the newcomer past the predation by NW. Sounds crazy, but in the end, the consumer wins.
 
maiznblu_757
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Tue Jan 06, 2004 6:25 am

I think the entire midwest should start one new airline, not just Minnesota.

Another thought. NWA or Pinnacle may not replace the Mesaba flights, Thats probably true. Those smaller airports that are lucky enough to have Northwest Airlines service, or a Pinnacle flight or two, will see larger Northwest aircraft for those particular flights.

[Edited 2004-01-05 22:34:25]
 
azjubilee
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Tue Jan 06, 2004 12:56 pm

Actually, Maiznblu757 - increasing a/c size is also going to be a violation of the struck work clause. For example, the DC9-10 that is flown to CVG from MSP at 302pm, cannot become an airbus or a larger DC9. So, there won't be any of that going on...


AZJ
 
cloudy
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Tue Jan 06, 2004 3:45 pm

What hub do they plan to connect to? Without a codeshare or at least an interlining agreement this plan simply will not work. Also, business ventures initiated by politicians with public money generally do not work. In the better cases they are allowed to fail. In worse cases (like Amtrak) they just keep sucking down money.

That being said, Ive always though Duluth was underserved becuase of the city's isolation and because of the potential tourist traffic to the boundary waters and other places...
 
jrlander
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Tue Jan 06, 2004 4:10 pm

KaiGywer:

I'm not sure how long you've lived in the Mankato area. My grandparents used to live on Lake Washington, but now live downtown in Old Main Aparmtnets. I've driven by the airport many, many times in my multiple visits there every year. MKT used to be served by North Central, then Republic. I remember picking my dad up at the airport there when I was very small. Then, for many years, a small airline Bemidji? served MSP-MKT. My grandfather flew them once to connect to a Delta flight to meet my father and I for a trip to Alaska.

I've often wondered why Delta Connection or American Eagle haven't tried routing through CVG or ORD. The business community is so large in the Mankato area, with a couple of very, very large companies, that I would think they might just be able to make it work. But I've never seen any data to prove that.

I wonder if other cities might be able to attract such service in light of this threatened strike.
 
PSU.DTW.SCE
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RE: Upper Minnesota Considers Starting New Airline

Wed Jan 07, 2004 2:10 am

Since Eagle is no longer in the prop business at ORD and same for DL at CVG there is no way any of the destinations would be served by either one. These cities can't support RJ service, the props are the only thing economical and that can provide them with some frequency. These cities show how there is still a need for turboprop service in the nation's air transportation network.