Boise Mayor Dave Bieter hopes that SkyWest Airlines' decision to operate a temporary maintenance hangar out of Boise Airport places the city in the driver's seat for a larger, permanent SkyWest expansion.
Bieter announced Friday during his State of the City address that SkyWest named Boise as a finalist for a new SkyWest maintenance building that would bring between 80 and 100 jobs here as well as $20 million to $30 million in construction investment.
"This is exciting news for our local economy and further evidence of the importance of Boise Airport in driving job expansion and new investment in our community," Bieter told the audience at Boise Centre.
Boise is one of three cities being considered for the new operation, SkyWest spokeswoman Marissa Snow said.
"Boise is selected not only because of its geographical location, but the current level of operations we already have there and the needs of our partners," Snow said.
SkyWest operates connector flights to and from Boise Airport for United Express, Delta Airlines, Alaska Airlines and US Airways Express. The air service operator has 334 aircraft and employs more than 10,000.
SkyWest has already agreed to operate a temporary maintenance operation out of an existing hangar at the airport's Jackson Jet Center, Bieter said. SkyWest hasn't determined the exact number of workers it will need there, but Snow said the total would be in the dozens. The temporary maintenance hangar will remain in operation until the new maintenance building is built, she said. The company plans to select a site by the end of summer, she said.
City Spokesman Adam Park said the temporary maintenance operation bodes well for Boise landing the brand-new SkyWest building.
"I would say this puts us in the lead just in terms of logistics," Park said.