Airport rebranding good for economic development

Published 6:48 pm Friday, February 15, 2019

Renaming the Franklin Municipal Airport the “Franklin Regional Airport” might not seem like a significant change, but the city’s Airport Advisory Board believes otherwise. The members of that board on Sept. 5, 2018, suggested the name change as a way to rebrand the airport as a regional asset that serves not only Franklin, but also Isle of Wight and Southampton counties. When put that way, we agree that this may be a good idea for bringing more business to the airport and to the greater area.

While the city will need to replace its sign at the intersection of John Beverly Rose Drive and Carrsville Highway (Business Route 58), the cost of doing so has been estimated at only $2,400, and will likely be lower, according to Airport Manager Jimmy Gray. The new sign may or may not still include “John Beverly Rose Field” — named for a Carrsville resident and Army helicopter pilot who was killed in a helicopter crash on June 29, 1964. But his service and sacrifice will still be honored, according to Gray, if and when plans to construct a memorial to Rose near the terminal building come to fruition.

Gray also commented that, “A lot more goes on here than people realize,” pointing out that the airport receives a fairly regular amount of corporate traffic.

We hope that the regional rebranding will indeed bring more corporate traffic and fuel sales to the airport.