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Officials at Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport cut the ceremonial ribbon December 22 to welcome incoming passengers and inaugurate the Airport's new non-stop air service between Ithaca and Charlotte via American Airlines.

The service started today with the weekly Saturday roundtrip between ITH and American's hub at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport (CLT), direct service Airport officials anticipate will expand as new gates currently under construction in Charlotte come on line. At present, a passenger can fly in or out from Charlotte, adding a leg through Philadelphia to complete the trip.

Tompkins County Legislature Chair Martha Robertson called this "an exciting day," as air service is initiated to a new hub, noting that the link to the Charlotte research triangle is important for our area, as well enabling easy connection to the multitude of other daily flights out of CLT. "We look forward to not just one flight a week," Robertson said.

Chair Robertson recognized Airport Director Mike Hall for his leadership in creating a vision for the Airport and effectively communicating that vision to the airlines and others, "letting them know what a great market we have here."

Director Hall observes that the new Charlotte service is a big step for ITH, that Charlotte (similar to Detroit and Washington) offers high reliability, as well as many connections south, to Florida, the Caribbean, and South America. CLT offers 674 daily flights that serve 160 destinations in 25 countries. "This is a tremendous boost to our connectivity," Hall notes.

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