ALBERT WHITTED AIRPORT PRESERVATION SOCIETY
1. Keeps jobs in our city
2. Brings business to St. Pete
3. Makes economic sense for our city
4. Great national historical significance
5. A great recreational asset
6. Pilots learn to fly here
7. A very safe airport
8. One of the nation's critical reliever airports
9. A critical base for Bayflight and Johns Hopkins The Hangar Restaurant
10. Platform to base Emergency equipment and aid
An official city-sponsored survey says nearly 300 people directly and indirectly earn their livelihood through jobs created by public and private enterprise connected with this airport.
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This airport is extremely valuable for attracting commerce to the heart of our downtown. Companies such as Templeton Funds, Bankers Insurance, Smith Fence Co., Bama Seafood Products and JMC Communities, to name a few, have found Albert Whitted to be convenient for corporate travel. St. Petersburg/Clearwater and Tampa International are about the same distance away -- nearly a 25-minute drive, if there's no traffic backups. Albert Whitted is just minutes away from almost any building in our downtown. Albert Whitted also attracts tourism. Every week, pilots from all over the country land here to enjoy the many recreational benefits of our area, and to support our local businesses.
948 jobs directly attributed to the airport, which translates into $42.9 million in payroll. Albert Whitted Airport is responsible for $128 million contributed into Florida's economy on a recurring annual basis.
(Source: Florida Aviation Economic Impact Study 2022)
Many folks who don't fly love to observe the wonder of aviation by watching aircraft of all types takeoff and land at this unique facility. For those wanting to learn to fly, Albert Whitted has a flying club with many talented instructors.
The Experimental Aircraft Association sponsors educational seminars here and it's Young Eagles program allows school-aged kids to experience their first flight in an airplane, free of charge. Hundreds of St. Pete's kids have taken advantage of this program during the past several years.
Contrary to popular belief, people from all walks of life and all types of financial situations fly airplanes. Many pilots rent inexpensive planes from flying clubs while others utilize joint ownership to cut the cost. A talented few even build their own.
You don't have to be rich to fly. Many people don't realize that some airplanes cost less than boats or automobiles. Albert Whitted attracts pilots -- rich, poor and in-between -- because this airport offers many benefits not found anywhere else in the country.
There's nearly year-round flying, nearby restaurants and hotels, beautiful shoreline views, enticing sunsets and short rides to many great tourist destinations within the state.
Every year hundreds of pilots—both private and professional—earn their wings and ratings here.
With most of our runways exiting to the water and our new good neighbor policy in place, very few takeoffs and landings occur over downtown neighborhoods.
Bayflight is Tampa Bay's life saving air rescue service and it's based at Albert Whitted. West Florida Helicopter, based at Whitted, also provides critical maintenance for other similar rescue services like Bayflight including the Florida Highway Patrol.
Furthermore, Albert Whitted supports Johns Hopkins as well as various other medical transport services.
Albert Whitted airport provides an expansive, easily accessible platform to base Emergency equipment and aid during and after a devastating storm, hurricane or other emergency. Our congested downtown offers no other area to base such an operation. Emergency personnel and airport staff from the Tamiami Airport near Miami said their airport was critical for relief efforts during Hurricane Andrew.