Airport Director’s Letter – Fall 2020

Airport Director’s Letter – Fall 2020
November 19, 2020 Jerry Vallely


Eric DahlHeading into the final stretch of 2020, there’s no question it has been a tumultuous year for the aviation industry. But, history has shown us that it’s a resilient industry, and even as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our nation, air travel has been slowly rebounding. On November 15, 2020, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screened 978,297 passengers at U.S. airports. While that is still down significantly compared with almost 2.4 million passengers screened in the same weekday one year earlier, it’s up from the approximately 87,500 screened on April 14 of this year. We’d like to think we’re pretty resilient here at St. Louis Downtown Airport too, and we welcome the opportunity to continue to share information about our tenants and airport that may be of interest to you.

In this issue, you’ll find a spotlight on Saint Louis University’s Parks College of Engineering, Aviation and Technology, which has been around since 1927, when it was founded as America’s first federally certified school of aviation. Learn about the role it is playing in adding new skilled professionals to the aviation workforce, which despite COVID-19, is still expected to have a shortage of pilots and mechanics in the coming years.

You’ll also read how organizers of the annual Girls in Aviation Day pivoted to a fully virtual format this year, so they could still connect with female high school students across the bi-state St. Louis region and educate them about the variety of careers in the aviation sector. Participants even got to enjoy a virtual flight experience, and you’ll read how you can too!

We round out this issue with our latest tenant profile, introducing you to West Star Aviation and their specialized work on the maintenance and support of the most sophisticated aircraft flying today.

While activity at our airport may have slowed in recent months, we remain confident for the future of St. Louis Downtown Airport given the exceptional tenants here and our unmatched location in the heartland of America, only minutes from the Gateway Arch Riverfront and downtown St. Louis, with convenient access to all points in the St. Louis region.  We hope through the stories we tell, you will become more familiar with our operation and can help spread the word about all the great things going on here. If you have questions or want to learn more, reach out directly to me and I’d be happy to connect.

You can learn more about the services the airport provides here.

Erick Dahl
Airport Director
(618) 337-6060