U.S. GA Airports: Dallas Executive Airport (KRBD/RBD)
This is a post by guest author Brian Myler, Director of Sales and Marketing at Ambassador Jet Center, a member of the UVair FBO Network. Brian was asked to contribute to this blog because of his expertise in business aircraft operations in the Dallas area. Any thoughts expressed below are entirely Brian’s and do not necessarily reflect the views of Universal Weather and Aviation, Inc.
A very convenient option for business aircraft operators traveling to the city center or area sporting events is Dallas Executive (KRBD). This often overlooked airport may become preferred for domestic-only business aircraft traffic due to an anticipated change in legislation, which will make the larger international airports surrounding Dallas even busier than ever.
1. Overview of Dallas Executive Airport
KRBD operates 24 hours a day with the air traffic control (ATC) tower manned 0700-2100 local. While not an airport of entry (AOE), KRBD is a convenient option for domestic travel to the Dallas area. Depending on your schedule, it may also be a convenient tech stop when traveling from Florida to the West Coast and vice versa. The longest runway is 6451 feet at 660 feet elevation. Located in southwest Dallas, KRBD is just outside the TFR and has few ATC delays compared to other area airports.
2. Full services are available at KRBD
This airport has fixed based operators (FBOs) that can provide all services needed. Aviation fuel is available along with other standard services, such as rental cars, in-flight catering, and aircraft maintenance. With its relatively light traffic, business aircraft operators can accomplish quick tech stop turns of approximately 20 minutes, depending on size of aircraft and volume of fuel uplift.
3. Close proximity to the city and sporting venues
KRBD is located close to freeways and is only about a 10-minute drive (approximately 11 miles) to the Dallas city center. This is also a convenient airfield choice for operators attending area sporting events. Drive time to the Cowboy’s Stadium is approximately 25 minutes with the Rangers Ballpark about 29 minutes away.
4. Options for international arrivals into Dallas
For international arrivals to the Dallas area, you can consider Addison (KADS), Dallas Love Field (KDAL), and Dallas-Ft Worth International (KDFW). KADS and KDAL are north of the city, while KDFW is to the northwest. All three are AOEs and can be utilized for international arrivals and departures. However, be aware that customs and immigrations’ operating hours differ for each of these locations. CIQ operating hours at KADS are Monday-Friday 0830-1730 local and are closed on the weekends. CIQ operates at KDAL Monday-Friday 0800-1700 local with weekend availability as long as prior notice is provided by 1630 local Friday. CIQ operates at KFDW from 0600-2100 local. As KFDW is a landing rights airport, landing approval must be obtained in advance, requiring 48 hours advance notification.
5. The expiration of the Wright Amendment of 1979 and what it means for KRBD
Traditionally, business and general aviation (GA) has often preferred KDAL as a destination due to its close proximity to central Dallas. The Wright Amendment of 1979 is a governmental amendment created to limit commercial traffic at KDAL and bolster demand for commercial flights at KDFW for passengers inbound and outbound out of the Dallas area. With the expiration of this amendment set for October 2014, the removal of commercial flight restrictions will most likely increase commercial traffic at KDAL.
The city of Dallas owns KDAL and has a major airline as its largest base tenant. This airline has already begun increasing the size of its aircraft to accommodate non-stop flights to and from destinations, such as New York, Chicago, and Miami. These will soon become available once the Wright Amendment expires. The city of Dallas has already begun modernizing its primary terminal in anticipation of an additional two million passengers per year in the first year.
With growth in commercial traffic at these levels, KDAL could become more crowded and expensive to utilize for GA. The city will also decide what new fees might be applicable for GA if they decide that increasing commercial activity and displacing some GA traffic is in the best interests of the airport. With these changes and increased traffic, KRBD will be strong option for business aircraft operators not requiring an AOE.
There are several choices to consider when traveling to Dallas. As they all have their particular pros and cons, KRBD may be your best option for either destination or tech stop purposes if your operation to the Dallas area is a domestic flight.
If you have any questions about this article, contact me at BMyler@ambassadorjetcenter.com.