McMINNVILLE, Oregon — On July 1, Konect Aviation Oregon will become manager of the McMinnville Municipal Airport (KMMV).
Although the company has been in operation at the McMinnville Airport since 2009, Konect Aviation only recently became the FBO, taking over for the previous operator, Cirrus Aviation, on Jan. 1.
In addition to the scenic tours and charter service Konect Aviation already offered, services now include fixed wing flight training, concierge services like travel information, aircraft catering, and passenger car rentals, what owner/general manager Holly Nehls refers to as “red carpet jet service.”
She says of the transition, “It’s been a lot of work and things are shaping up. The city has been shifting focus to support the airport, so Konect’s timing is great!”
And shifting focus indeed. In 2017, the city will be renovating the airport’s main runway, 04-22 closing it down for work, potentially for the entire summer. Konect officials said they decided that would be a good time to build a new FBO office and terminal building.
Nehls says, “Currently, the biggest challenge is keeping the forward movement.”
The airport has more than 100 acres of grounds and more than 100 hangars that need to be maintained. But she hopes that after the completion of the runway renovation and the new building project, 2018 will be the airport’s “shining year.”
Company Founder Ingo Nehls adds, “the transition is an expansion of [Konect’s] services. It’s important for the airport to be part of the community, supporting the community.”
The only thing left to do is to build an airport that can service those aircraft, Holly Nehls believes, and she emphasizes that the airport isn’t trying to attract big commercial jets, but smaller, private and corporate aircraft.
“Konect Aviation is off to a good start, and air traffic is picking up for the season,” she added.
Current airport manager Graham Goad, who has been in the position for the last seven years, says he is “excited about the change, excited for a new focus.”
The change will also allow him to focus on some of his other projects, and he believes it will be good for the airport.