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People Express Considering Pittsburgh International For Corporate Headquarters

(Photo credit: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images)

(Photo credit: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images)

John Shumway John Shumway
John Shumway joined NewsRadio 1020 KDKA in 2004 as co-host of The KDKA...
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — It seems like Pittsburgh International Airport has fewer and fewer options for travelers; but now, one airline is thinking about making Pittsburgh its home.

The silent halls of the Pittsburgh International concourses sit waiting for more passengers to serve.

“We have space; we have the infrastructure,” said Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. “We have the technology that is there and a lot of those things are place.”

And that is what Allegheny County is trying to sell to People Express.

You remember the name, a pretty big airline in its first generation heyday back in the ‘80s, but it’s been about 25 years since the brand flew our skies.

Now, the rebirth of People Express is looking for a home.

“And we’re in the mix, and we’ll continue to put our best effort out there to try to attract more flights,” said Fitzgerald.

Up until lately, it was widely believed – as their website would suggest – Newport News would be the airline’s home.

But People Express President Michael Morisi told The Daily Press in that town that Pittsburgh International Airport is now competing to be the corporate headquarters and maintenance facility.

Morisi says Pittsburgh has become more serious in luring his airline with a pitch of incentives.

“We’ve had discussions and those are private discussions that we can’t get into,” said Fitzgerald.

But he says they won’t give away the store.

“We sit down, and we have the discussions, and we want to make sure it’s the best deal for the taxpayer,” he added.

The airline plans to meet with folks in Pittsburgh in the next couple weeks.

If it works out, they could open doors initially to destinations like Newport News, Providence, R.I., West Palm Beach, Fla., and Newark, and then later Orlando and Boston.

Because of all the empty space, Pittsburgh could be ready to open its doors to People Express in short order. And it might have to; People Express has made it clear it would like to be up and operating sometime this spring.

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