Report: Authority Seeks to Buy Sikorsky Airport for $10 Million
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (AP) – The authority that operates Bradley International Airport and other public airports in Connecticut is seeking to pay up to $10 million to buy the airport named after aviation pioneer Igor Sikorsky from the city of Bridgeport.
Hearst Connecticut Media reported last week, the Connecticut Airport Authority approved a term sheet outlining the potential sale.
The airport is named after Sikorsky, the Russian-born aviation innovator who invented the first working helicopter since 1972, although last fall the city renamed it Bridgeport Igor Sikorsky Memorial Airport. This drew criticism from Sikorsky’s sons and others who blamed the city for not allowing public participation before the vote. Bridgeport has operated Stratford Airport since the 1930s.
The airport serves business, charter and private flights, but has been considered for a return to commercial passenger flights. This would likely require millions of dollars in infrastructure upgrades. The airport currently has an annual operating deficit of approximately $500,000.
A recent study commissioned by Bridgeport and airport tenants Atlantic Aviation and Three Wing Aviation concluded that a new passenger terminal would cost at least $15 million, but the airport could generate millions in revenue for the state. through taxes and fees, as well as creating jobs and attracting other businesses.
The Connecticut Airport Authority has the ability to raise funds for infrastructure improvements, aviation experts believe.
Airport Authority Director Kevin Dillon told Hearst he hoped to finalize a deal by the end of the year, although he added that a lease could be an alternative. .
“That doesn’t mean that if for some reason we can’t agree on the acquisition, we won’t come back and come back on a long-term lease,” he said.