Smyrna Airport - An Economic Engine

Although not a part of its immediate goals, commercial airlines could definitely be using the Smyrna-Rutherford County Airport in the future, according to Executive Director John Black.

He noted that right now they are equipped to handle any size of aircraft, even the giant 747's.

Black explained . . .

In other words, the airport not only serves the air transportation needs of companies that are already located here, it also acts as a magnet to attract other corporations.

The old saying "first impressions count" is certainly true. For many business leaders considering expanding into this community, what they see as they step out of their corporate jet at the Smyrna-Rutherford County Airport creates that "first impression".

He noted that the Smyrna-Rutherford County Airport Authority is also a landlord and developer when you consider that its 1,700 acre site is the home to 51 businesses. In fact, Black proudly noted that its occupancy was now at 95 per cent.

The facility was constructed for the Army Air Combat Crew School in 1942. The base was deactivated at the end of World War II, and then reactivated in 1948 by the newly organized United States Air Force. It then became known as Sewart Air Force Base in 1950, serving various Troop Carrier Wings until 1970 when the base was again deactivated and transferred to a civilian operation.

Today more than 1,000 people, including National Guard personnel, work at Smyrna-Rutherford County Airport. Visit their website:

- WGNS Radio

Salil Rai