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Report: Central Ohio Airports Help State Economy Soar

John Glenn International Airport

A new report shows that airports and related businesses operated by the Columbus Regional Airport Authority (CRAA) add $12.9 billion annually to the state’s economy. 

The independent study by Economic Development Research Group finds that John Glenn Columbus International Airport, Rickenbacker International Airport and its Foreign Trade Zone 138, and Bolton Field Airport provide 58,730 jobs in total.

“The study reflects a significant growth in impact since 2012, affirming the fact that our community’s three airports and related business segments are powerful economic engines that fuel Ohio and local economies,” says CRAA president Joseph R. Nardone.

CRAA says the study, which cites 2017 data, includes all areas of the economy including travel, tourism and hospitality; transportation and logistics; imports and exports; warehousing and distribution; food and beverage; and parking and infrastructure.

“While facilitating the daily flow of passengers and cargo, we’re actively engaged with public and private partners to bring even greater economic prosperity to our region and state,” Nardone says.

Columbus 2020, which serves as the economic development organization for the 11-county Columbus region, points to transportation infrastructure and logistics capacities, including those under the stewardship of CRAA, as key selling points for the area.

“Columbus Regional Airport Authority’s committed partnership in passenger air service, cargo air service and the logistics industry bolsters our community’s success and solidifies our ability to compete on both the national and international stage,” said Columbus 2020 president Kenny McDonald.

Debbie Holmes has worked at WOSU News since 2009. She has hosted All Things Considered, since May 2021. Prior to that she was the host of Morning Edition and a reporter.