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$28.7 Billion Brought to Valley’s Economy by Phoenix Airport System

by Public Relations | Published On: Jan 10, 2013 | Last Updated: 

Phoenix, AZ – A new economic impact study conducted by the Arizona State University W.P. Carey School of Business found that the Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport system had a $28.7 billion impact on the Phoenix area economy in 2011. That’s over $78 million every single day.

“The Phoenix Airport system is an economic engine that not only generates employment, but benefits local businesses and is integral to the multi-billion dollar tourism industry,” said Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton.

The study found the airport system, air travelers and tourism supported nearly 250,000 jobs with a payroll of $10 billion. Sky Harbor alone continues to employ nearly 33,000 people. That number jumps to 43,000 including Sky Harbor Center.

Airports across the country are now including Airport property development in their economic impact studies. The city of Phoenix Aviation Department has followed suit and is now including Sky Harbor Center in its study. Sky Harbor Center, a 500-acre city-owned commerce park, is home to the Airport’s Rental Car Center as well as major tenants such as Bank of America, Honeywell, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and US Airways.

“The Phoenix Airport system is the largest economic engine in the state of Arizona,” said Vice Mayor Michael Johnson. “And the Airport is a major source of employment with jobs at airlines, in food service and security.”

Each day, Phoenix Sky Harbor sees over 1,200 aircraft arrive and depart, an average of 111,000 passengers and 828 tons of cargo. Though Phoenix Sky Harbor, Phoenix Deer Valley and Phoenix Goodyear Airports are owned and operated by the city of Phoenix, no local tax dollars are used to operate the airports. They generate their own operating revenue from parking, airlines, retailers and other business.

The overall impact number of $28.7 billion is only slightly down from the 2007 number of $33 billion, with one of the most significant decreases attributed to reduced traveler spending due to the economic struggles of the past five years.

“Each year, as many as 40 million visitors travel through Sky Harbor and thousands of private aircraft arrive and depart at Phoenix Deer Valley and Phoenix Goodyear Airports,” said Phoenix City Manager, David Cavazos. “The city of Phoenix is proud to be such a strong contributor to the local and regional economy.”