Frontier realigns Milwaukee flying

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Republic Airways Holdings subsidiary Frontier Airlines is realigning some routes from its Milwaukee hub.

The airline is launching service from Milwaukee to Hartford, Connecticut on 27 September and San Antonio, Texas 19 November. Both routes were previously operated by Midwest Connect but were eliminated in 2008. Republic is in the process of unifying the Frontier and Midwest Airlines brands after completing the acquisitions of both carriers in 2009.

Frontier is placing 50-seat Embraer ERJ-145s on its 24 weekly flights to Hartford, and Embraer E-190s on the four weekly flights to San Antonio. Frontier also offers service to San Antonio from its Denver hub.

Frontier also announced it will cease flying from Milwaukee to Atlanta on 7 September, a route that is currently flown 18 times weekly. AirTran Airways and Delta Air Lines also offer flights on the route, and both carriers have hubs in Atlanta. Earlier this month Midwest and Delta terminated a codesharing pact that was expanded in June 2009 after Delta's merger with Northwest Airlines.

Other schedule changes Frontier plans to introduce in Milwaukee include ending seasonal service to San Diego on 7 September, two months earlier than originally planned. Frontier plans to upgrade its flights from Milwaukee to Boston, New York-LaGuardia, and Washington-National to Airbus A319s. The routes were previously flown with a mix of E-Jet and Airbus aircraft. AirTran flies all three routes as well.

Frontier is replacing ERJ-145s operating to Philadelphia with E-170s. US Airways also flies between the two cities, using CRJs flown by regional partner Air Wisconsin.

The final element of the Milwaukee realignment is Frontier's decision to eliminate one connecting bank of flights, for a total of three, beginning 19 November. Frontier says the change is being done on a seasonal basis.

Separately, Frontier plans to end flights from its Denver hub to Rapid City, South Dakota on 7 September. Double-daily service to Denver is currently provided by Lynx Aviation with Bombardier Q400s. Frontier announced earlier this year that it would shut down Lynx this fall. The city will not lose service to Denver, however, as it is also provided by United Airlines' regional partners.