Airports in Kansas support more than 47,000 jobs, generate $2.3 billion in payroll and produce $10.4 billion in economic activity, according to a study released last week by the Kansas Department of Transportation. The study, which was funded by a grant from the Federal Aviation Administration, assessed the impact of the state’s 132 general aviation airports and eight commercial airports. Not surprisingly, Wichita Mid-Continent Airport has the biggest impact, by far. Based on 2009 data, Mid-Continent had a $4.7 billion economic impact — or about 94 percent of the total economic impact of all the commercial airports in the state. Among general aviation airports, which include the Hawker Beechcraft and Cessna airports, the economic impact of Wichita’s Col. James Jabara Airport was $90 million, the Riverside Airport was $582,000, and the Westport Airport near Pawnee and West Steet was $1.2 million.
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