Amazon Air Takes Off in Wichita With Express Delivery

Amazon airplane

Amazon Air recently broadened its network into Kansas with a regional gateway facility at Wichita Eisenhower National Airport that will offer express delivery to Prime customers across the region, according to a FreightWaves report Friday (Jan. 21).

The private airline debuted its daily cargo service between Wichita and its regional hub at Fort Worth Alliance Airport in Texas on Thursday (Jan. 20), the report says. The Amazon Air flights are operated by Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based regional airline Silver Airways using an ATR72-500 turboprop aircraft.

Silver Airways operates passenger service across the southeastern U.S., Bahamas and the Caribbean with small propeller airplanes and seaplanes. The airline started its contract with Amazon in November in the Des Moines, Iowa, and Albuquerque, N.M., areas from Alliance Airport.

Atlas Air, Air Transport Services Group’s ABX Air and Air Transport International, Sun Country and ASL Airlines in Europe are the other airlines under in the Amazon Air fleet.

The Wichita Airport Authority leased 10,691 square feet in its cargo terminal to Trego-Dugan Aviation, Amazon’s subcontractor in charge of sorting and loading packages, the report says. PrimeFlight Aviation will also lease 1,470 square feet to provide de-icing services, the FreightWaves report says. The airport has access to Interstate 235 and a state highway.

Amazon has a 1 million-square-foot fulfillment center in Park City, Kansas, and a 140,000-square-foot delivery station in the northeast part of Wichita. Amazon Air serves more than 45 airports within 100 miles of more than 70% of the population, including 10 new destinations and 24 aircrafts added in the last year or so.

Amazon Air opened its primary package hub, a $1.5 billion facility, at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport in August.

Related: Amazon Takes Minority Stake In Air Freight Partner

In the leadup to Amazon Air’s launch, Amazon bought a minority stake for about $132 million in shares (13.5 million shares) in Air Transport Services Group (ATSG) in March.