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EWN Expansion News from the Triangle Business Journal- 8/5/18

Bigger Delta, American jets mean bigger apron at this small, eastern N.C. airport

By  – Senior Staff Writer, Triangle Business Journal

As commercial airlines shift focus to larger jets, it presents a conundrum for smaller airports – one federal funds might help solve for a tiny, regional airfield near the North Carolina coast.

In New Bern, Coastal Carolina Regional Airport has been quietly serving both Delta Airlines and American Airlines for more than a decade, says its director, Andy Shorter. And it’s doing it from a 40,000-square-foot terminal.

Small jets, many of them 50-seaters, land at the airport, taking eastern North Carolinians on quick jaunts to Charlotte and Atlanta where they can then connect to destinations throughout the globe.

But, as Joe Esposito, senior vice president of network planning at Delta, told a crowd last week at the Regional Transportation Alliance 2018 Transportation Breakfast, the airline is moving to larger jets.

While Delta used to have 500 of its 50-seaters, it’s now down to 120 “and shrinking,” Esposito said. “Buying smaller airplanes is not necessarily where Delta wants to be,” Esposito told the crowd last week.

Shorter says it’s a shift his team has seen coming, which is why it’s elated to win a new $3.9 million FAA grant for “the first transformational project we’ve had in a long time,” an apron expansion. An apron is where airplanes park to load and unload passengers and cargo.

“Even the small airplanes are getting bigger,” Shorter says. “Bigger means more space… By expanding the apron, we can basically have enough space for them.”

By using some of the cash to swap the ramp’s asphalt for concrete, it will be able to handle a heavier weight, too.

And that’s all just the first phase of what’s coming. Phases 2, 3, and 4 coming to the New Bern airport will expand the terminal by another 5,000 feet, increase how many people it can hold and provide more area for enhanced TSA screening.

In order to attract more growth, investments are essential, he says. He envisions a Coastal Carolina that can one day fly nonstop to other hubs such as Chicago and Washington, D.C.

Right now, 70 percent of the airport’s traffic is general aviation, with commercial traffic from Delta and American accounting for the other 30 percent. The airport sees “about a quarter million commercial passengers” each year, and just over 40,000 operations.

“All the needles are pointing up for increased air passengers,” he says. “The economy is increasing. The population is going to increase out this way.”

State funds are already being used for general aviation projects, such as new hangar space that could lure more companies to eastern North Carolina.

Coastal Carolina Regional Airport- A Top Notch Facility- Business View Magazine 7/5/18

COASTAL CAROLINA REGIONAL AIRPORT – A TOPNOTCH FACILITY

written by BVM July 5, 2018
Coastal Carolina Regional Airport, a jet parked on the tarmac.

Business View Magazine interviews Andy Shorter, Airport Director at the Coastal Carolina Regional Airport, as part of our series on American regional airports.

Coastal Carolina Regional Airport (EWN) is a public-use airport located three miles southeast of downtown New Bern, in Craven County, North Carolina. The 785-acre facility is a full-service airport that supports both commercial and general aviation. EWN has an interesting history as it was founded in 1931 before World War II. Many airports across the nation were founded during World War II where the local communities took those assets over from the government at the end of the war. It is interesting to note that there was enough foresight in this area to go ahead and start the development of an airport in Eastern North Carolina well before the war years.

Simmons-Nott came from North Carolina Senator Furnifold McLendel Simmons who was present at the 1931 dedication of the new facility that was to bear his name. During an air performance for the dedication, United States Marine Corps First Lieutenant Joel Nott was killed. Senator Simmons required that 1stLt Nott’s named be added to the airport to pay homage for the fallen military officer. After the start of World War II, the Airport served as a Marine Corps Air Station for several years, before a permanent base was opened nearby and the facility reverted back to civilian control. The Simmons-Nott designation was retained initially, but eventually the name was changed to Craven County Regional Airport, and then, about 10 years ago, it was modified to Coastal Carolina Regional Airport to embrace the surrounding counties and be reflective of the general area the facility serves.

Two airplanes with the control tower behind them at Coastal Carolina Regional Airport.“Craven County, as a facility name, was a little bit too exclusive for a truly regional airport,” says Airport Director, Andrew Shorter. “We wanted to make sure to include our surrounding counties that don’t have commercial service or even public airports. It was a good move, I think, to change the name to make it inclusive for all our coastal neighbors. Our Airport Authority has members from each of those adjacent counties and we wouldn’t want it any other way.”

Since its opening, EWN has seen many changes, including runway extensions to accommodate larger aircraft, the addition of hangars, and a new commercial passenger terminal that was constructed on a new site in 1999. In 2008 the Airport’s new general aviation terminal was built thereby completing the modernization of both airport terminal facilities. About 50 percent of Airport traffic is business-related, a portion of it due to the Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, which is 12 miles away. Leisure travel is responsible for the remaining 50 percent, thanks to New Bern’s location near the beaches of North Carolina’s Crystal Coast.

The area’s attractiveness to investors and its continuous growth are also generating traffic, says Shorter. “Our general aviation terminal is topnotch and it’s what we call the front door of the community that brings in the investors and new businesses looking to locate to our area. Those important businesses wouldn’t necessarily drive down the highway to investigate a potential new site but they will generally fly-in. So having a facility like EWN available for use is important right from the start”. In addition to the topnotch terminal and FBO that runs it, EWN also supports flight students with a very robust flight training center. “Since the military base is so close – a lot of those transitioning pilots need to get their civilian air transport pilot credentials; therefore, it’s very convenient for them to use the flight school right here to do that training.”

New Bern and the surrounding area have become increasingly popular as a place to live, including for significant numbers of retirees who use the Airport to fly commercially or have privately owned planes, Shorter adds. EWN is also home to a 42,000-square-foot FedEx cargo terminal that Shorter estimates does about half its business with the Marine Corps base.
“We’re a small airport, but we do everything your bigger airports do, but on a scale of our own,” says Shorter. “Right now, that is about 40,000 operations a year and those are spread between commercial and business/general aviation. The flight school is probably 50 percent of that, because things are very active and there’s also the cargo. So we have a good blend, it’s a really nice spread of aviation located right here at the confluence of our two rivers here in New Bern and within what is being referred to as North Carolina’s Aerospace Corridor.”

Aerial view of the Coastal Carolina Regional Airport.A majority of businesses on the Airport’s grounds are aeronautical-related, but work has begun on a project aimed at broadening that scope by developing a 25-acre site, specifically, for non-aeronautical businesses. “We are looking to expand commercial development into an airport area that is not conducive to aeronautical uses, so we’re kind of dipping our toe into that water now,” explains Shorter.

EWN is one of North Carolina’s 10 commercial service airports and Shorter says it is self-sufficient; requiring no general funding from the city or county. “We get some valuable support from Craven County including Finance and IT, but we budget our own money and reinvest those assets to keep all the pieces of the airport economic engine running smoothly,” he states.

Shorter remarks that as a primary, commercial, non-hub airport, Coastal Carolina Regional Airport receives annual capital improvement funding from the FAA of about $1.3 million per year, as well as a portion of the funds the State of North Carolina has recently provided to the 10 commercial airports.

He describes the Airport as a “hybrid” because of the strong general aviation and commercial traffic and he credits that fact as the key element of the facility’s local impact. EWN has 45 employees and according to Shorter, the Airport’s most recent economic impact survey shows it supports 180 direct jobs and another 380 indirect positions in the area. “Our airport, in 2016, had a $179 million annual impact,” he adds. “That puts us 13th in the state out of 72 airports.” The aircraft hangars are completely full and there is a waiting list, putting new hangar development high on the Airport’s wish list.

Over the last few years, most of the taxiways and some aircraft aprons have been rehabilitated and work on one-half of the general aviation ramp has been completed. Bids have taken place to update the remaining portion. “We consider that the front door to our business community,” says Shorter. “So after rehabbing taxiways and aprons last year, what we’re going to move into this year, I consider a transformational project, and that’s the air carrier apron. We are not just going to rehabilitate it, but expand it as well.”

Future plans also include extending one runway even further to handle the larger planes being used by regional carriers and refurbishing the smaller, crosswind runway that’s heavily used by the flight school. Installing approach lighting and Runway Visual Range instrumentation systems, refurbishing the air traffic control tower, and building an Airport Rescue and Firefighting facility are also on tap. “Right now, our aircraft rescue-firefighting facilities are distributed and barely adequate” notes Shorter. “We’re going to build one facility, so we can keep it all in one place and increase our efficiency on that front.”

“With capital projects, it’s kind of left foot, right foot, but it takes both of them to move forward,” he adds. “We’re doing transactional projects to maintain FAA and state-required airport standards, while at the same time we’re making transformational changes to move to the next level of what the commercial air carrier industry is going to show us.”

AT A GLANCE

WHO: Coastal Carolina Regional Airport

WHAT: A public-use airport

WHERE: Three miles south of downtown New Bern, in Craven County, North Carolina

WEBSITE: www.newbernairport.com

 

July 2018

Emerald Isle Flavor Festival- October 20, 2018- Emerald Isle, NC

Emerald Isle Flavor Festival- October 20, 2018- Emerald Isle, NC

Coastal Cuisine, Craft Beer & Wine Festival

Join us for Emerald Isle Flavor 2018, the premier NC Brew and Food Festival event on the Crystal Coast.

Sample a variety of craft beers including IPA, Pale Ales, Pilsners, Stouts, Lagers and more made by local North Carolina craft breweries or some of the great wine from local vineyards. And tempt your taste buds with delectable seafood dishes created by chefs from the finest Southern Outer Banks area restaurants.

Entertainment for the weekend includes performances from a variety of artists. So come relax and enjoy a fabulous oceanside weekend of food and fun in Emerald Isle!

2018 Autumn Festival- September 22, 2018- New Bern, NC

2018 Autumn Festival- September 22, 2018- New Bern, NC

When:
September 22, 2018 @ 6:30 pm – 10:00 pm America/New York Timezone
Cost:
$50
Contact:
Taylor Shannon
(330) 858-3430

Experience fundraising a different way in New Bern with live music, silent auctions and everyone dancing the night away in the heart of downtown.

Autumn Affair will have the popular band, Limited Engagement for you to dance the night away! You can also bid on dozens of items including overnight getaways, gift certificates, paintings, boat rides and so much more!

Autumn Affair brings our community together for Boys & Girls Clubs of the Coastal Plain, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to enable all young people, especially those that need us most, to reach their full potential as responsible, productive and caring citizens.

100% of proceeds go directly to New Bern and Havelock Clubs.

Swansboro Mullet Festival- October 13-14, 2018

Swansboro Mullet Festival- October 13-14, 2018

Mmm, mmm, mullet! Eat it fried, broiled, grilled, smoked, stewed and more! Here at the Annual Mullet Festival of Swansboro, you can get mullet any way you like it.

The Swansboro Mullet Festival kicks off on Saturday in Swansboro with a parade down Highway 24. This family-friendly festival also features a street carnival, arts & crafts, games, music and more. The kiddos will love the children’s area that includes games, a climbing wall, inflatables and the always popular “Mullet Toss!”

 

Festival Admission:
Admission is FREE

 

Swansboro Mullet Festival Contact Information:
Website: www.swansborofestivals.com
Phone: (910) 326-2600

Come out to the Carolina Kite Festival in Atlantic Beach where you’ll experience two days of high-flying fun! See more than 100 kites soaring through the air, watch kite-flying demonstrations and take beautiful pictures of the kites dotting the sky. Kids’ activities include candy drops and kite building.

 

Carolina Kite Festival Schedule:

Saturday & Sunday: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Night Fly will be held on Saturday evening at 6:00 pm

 

Carolina Kite Festival Admission:
Admission is FREE

 

Carolina Kite Festival Location:
The event is hosted by Kites Unlimited & BirdStuff, etc. and takes place at:

Sands Villa Resort
1400 E Ft. Macon Rd.
Atlantic Beach, NC

 

Carolina Kite Festival Contact Information:
Website: birdsandkites.com
Phone: (252) 247-7011

Emerald Isle Beach Music Festival- September 29, 2018

Emerald Isle Beach Music Festival- September 29, 2018

Make plans to visit Emerald Isle this September for the Emerald Isle Beach Music Festival and enjoy a day filled with great music, food and fun!

Food trucks and vendors will be set up in the parking area of the Western Ocean Regional Access, so grab some lunch, snacks, and/or dinner at the festival. And make sure to purchase your very own Emerald Isle Beach Music Festival t-shirt at the gazebo.

The Beach Music Festival was an area favorite nearly twenty years ago and is returning for music lovers throughout the Crystal Coast.

 

Music Festival Admission:

Admission is FREE

 

Music Festival Hours:

Start time: 11:00 am
End time: 5:30 pm

 

Music Festival Location:

Parking will be permitted along the grassy NC 58 right of way. Only handicapped parking will be available at the Western Ocean Regional Access.

North Carolina Seafood Festival- October 5-7, 2018- Morehead City NC

The North Carolina Seafood Festival was selected as one of the Top 20 Festivals & Events in the Southeast!

This FREE festival is one of the area’s most popular, drawing in more than 200,000 people to Morehead City. For more than 25 years, the festival has provided residents and visitors alike with world-class entertainment, family fun, and most importantly, the best seafood you’ve ever tasted.

Food lovers have the chance to sample just about every piece of seafood imaginable or learn how to prepare their own with chef cooking demonstrations.

The NC Seafood Festival also features amusement rides, music concert, road race, pier fishing tournament, sailing regatta and the annual Southern Outer Banks Boat Show.

The Seafood Festival in Morehead City, NC, is a don’t-miss event!

MumFest October 12-14, 2018- New Bern, NC

MumFest October 12-14, 2018- New Bern, NC

MumFest is a combination of family fun, entertainment, attractions, exhibitors and great food in the beautifully restored setting of historic downtown New Bern and its waterfront. About 100,000 festival-goers enjoyed Mumfestivities in 2017. And, MumFest 2018 promises to be another fabulous fun-filled fall weekend! So be sure to mark your calendar for October 12-14, 2018!

 

Admission: FREE & Open to the Public!

DISADVANTAGED BUSINESS ENTERPRISE (DBE) GOAL

NOTICE TO THE PUBLIC

DISADVANTAGED BUSINESS ENTERPRISE (DBE) GOAL

Coastal Carolina Regional Airport, operated by the Coastal Carolina Regional Airport Authority, hereby publishes a proposed overall goal for its DBE Program for FY 2019 to FY 2021.  The proposed overall goal is 7.9% for all Federal Aviation Administration-Airport Improvement Program funded projects in FY 2019 to FY 2021.  The methodology used in developing this goal is available for review and comment during normal business hours (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.) until August 15, 2018, at the office of the Coastal Carolina Regional Airport, 200 Terminal Drive, New Bern, NC  28562.

For additional information and/or questions, please contact Leigh Ann Cook, Business Manager at (252) 638-8591 x222.