"Chamber Days" At Tyler Airport

It is now cheaper and more convenient than ever to fly out of Tyler Pounds Regional Airport. That's the message officials are charged with getting out to business leaders across East Texas. The airport held its first of a series of "Chamber Days" today; aimed at strengthening regional relationships. It allows communities like Jacksonville, the opportunity to showcase their city to travelers at the airport. Those same community leaders, in turn, are given tours of the airport and informed of all the advantages of flying out of Tyler, instead of, for example, Dallas.

"This is an opportunity to get Jacksonville out before public that we might not reach," said Larry Morgan, of the Jacksonville Economic Development office and Chamber of Commerce. "People going to Houston. People going to Austin. People coming in and leaving. We may never touch those people. We can touch them today, and that's exciting for us."

"This morning we learned more about industries that really rely on air transportation,and how we can benefit one another," added airport manager Davis Dickson, "and that's really what we're out to do today."

Airport officials say several business leaders have already talked about changing their travel plans. They also say the strong regional relationships will soon become even more vital once Loop 49 is complete. The still under-construction highway is set to come within a half-mile of the airport.

Kevin Berns, reporting.