Gulfstream delays new service from Pittsburgh

Washington DC
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Plans by Gulfstream International Airlines to launch regional service at Pittsburgh International airport as early as the first quarter of 2010 have been delayed until at least June.

The delay comes as Pittsburgh has lost air service to roughly 60 destinations within a 643km (400-mile) radius since 2003, including Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and Richmond, Virginia. The carrier and airport operator the Allegheny County Airport Authority have been in discussions to change this by having Gulfstream place 19-seat Beechcraft 1900Ds into routes from Pittsburgh to destinations such as to Harrisburg and DuBois, Pennsylvania.

Initially the service was ideally to begin during the first quarter but now a summer launch is more likely.

"Everything we've done takes a little longer than we planned," Gulfstream vice president of corporate development Mickey Bowman says.

Presently the operator is seeking a distribution system for the service. Bowman says Gulfstream has considered traditional legacy systems and newer technology, and he would like to make a decision in a couple of weeks.

While the carrier prepares to inaugurate non-subsidised service, the airline is also considering applying for the US DOT's essential air service (EAS) program for flights from Johnstown and Altoona to Pittsburgh, Bowman says.