The three major airports across the Rio Grande Valley have seen a year of adding flights and boosting passenger traffic after a down year taken by a pandemic.
In Brownsville, a stunning new airport terminal opened early in 2021. They’re all notable developments. In the middle of the region, in Weslaco, a smaller but busy airport caters to corporate and charter air travel. It also is making its own improvements.
The Mid-Valley Airport partnered with the Weslaco Economic Development Corporation in gaining $2.5 million in funding from the Texas Department of Transportation and two other agencies. The state funds will go toward a project that will add two new hangars, six spaces for jets and two new buildings.
The Weslaco airport touts its central Valley location and the ease with which business executives can arrive and leave the grounds with minimal delays. The improvements going on now will only add to the convenience along with the new facilities.
“We don’t have a crowded airport,” said Andrew Munoz, the director of the Mid-Valley Airport, which is part of Weslaco city government. “We have a niche of being centrally located and being a more cost-effective way of doing business.”
Series Of Improvements
The Weslaco airport has been making a number of improvements over the last five years.
Prior to the present project underway, the Mid-Valley Airport had extended its runway by 1,000 feet to serve large corporate and business aircraft. There is the addition of new corporate hangars. The airport’s surveillance system was also upgraded.
All the improvements made the Mid-Valley Airport more attractive for corporate air travel relating to manufacturing, retailing and medical services along with charter services and international tourism. The Weslaco airport currently has over 50 hangars with two new ones on the way.
“Major corporations are seeing the advantages of coming in-and-out of the region in a centrally located city,” Munoz said. “We’ve seen considerable growth in corporate jet travel.”
The current improvement project is expected to be completed in November. For Weslaco, it’s a good tie-in to the city’s growing industrial park which is adding new clients and warehouses. The industrial park is also located in close proximity to the city’s airport just north of Expressway 77/83.
“When your airport does well, your general economy does well,” Munoz said.
A Boost For Tourism
The Weslaco airport may not be familiar to air travelers-at large in the Valley.
It is, however, well known to many pilots of corporate and charter flights. The Mid-Valley airport sees a surge of activity in the winter months with charter flights from the Midwest bringing tourists. The same is true for travelers from northern Mexico. The airport has an international terminal and offers faster customs clearance than larger airports in the area.
The new hangars and spaces being added this year to the Weslaco airport will only make those elements even more attractive. It’s another reason to do business in the Mid-Valley City.