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Reading Regional Airport , also known as Carl A. Spaatz Field, is a public airport located three miles (5 km) northwest of the central business district of Readingmarker, a city in Berks Countymarker, Pennsylvaniamarker, United Statesmarker. It is owned by the Reading Regional Airport Authority.

As per Federal Aviation Administration records, the airport had 2,268 passenger boardings in calendar year 2006, 2,445 in 2005 and 9,288 in 2004. The airport formerly had scheduled service on US Airways Express carrier Air Midwest, which ended on September 3, 2004. The airport is now served by three charter airlines.

Charter airlines



Facilities and aircraft

Reading Regional Airport covers an area of 888 acres (359 ha) which contains two asphalt paved runways: 13/31 measuring 6,350 x 150 ft (1,935 x 46 m) and 18/36 measuring 5,151 x 150 ft (1,570 x 46 m).

For the 12-month period ending December 31, 2006, the airport had 124,650 aircraft operations, an average of 341 per day: 91% general aviation, 5% air taxi, 3% military, 1% commuter/cargo and <1% scheduled="" commercial.="" There="" are="" 177="" aircraft="" based="" at="" this="" airport:="" 63%="" single-engine,="" 21%="" multi-engine,="" 11%="" jet,="" 2%="" helicopter, 2% ultralight and 1% glider.

History

Opened as a civil airport in April 1938, Reading Airport was used by the United States Army Air Force First Air Force as a training airfield during World War II.

Reading Army Airfield was opened on 1 June 1943, with the 309th Base Headquarters and Air Base Squadron as its host unit. The mission of the airfield was to train tactical reconnaissance units. The 26th Tactical Reconnaissance Group was activated on the airfield the same date, with the 37th, 39th, 40th and 91st Photo Reconnaissance Squadrons.

Aircraft used by the group for training were the Curtiss O-52 Owl; Douglas O-53 Havoc; Douglas O-46, and the Stinson O-49 Vigilant . The 72d Liaison Squadron, flying the Aeronaca O-58 Grasshopper arrived on 7 June and remained assigned to the station until 29 July 1943 when it was assigned to Camp Mackallmarker, North Carolinamarker.

On 11 November 1943, the 26th was reassigned to Camp Campbellmarker, Kentuckymarker to train with the 101st Airborne Division before deploying to Englandmarker, and engaging in combat operations as part of Ninth Air Force. It was replaced by the 11th Photographic Group on 1 December 1943. The 11th Photo Group used Reading as its worldwide headquarters, as its reconnaissance and photo squadrons were deployed to various parts of the world.

On 1 January 1944, Reading AAF was reassigned to Air Technical Service Command and became a sub-base of the Middletown Air Depotmarker near Harrisburgmarker. The mission of the station became to repair and overhaul aircraft and return them to active service. The 11th Photo Group moved out to MacDill Airfieldmarker, Floridamarker.

On 1 June 1944, the 309th Air Base Squadron was redesignated as the 85th Army Air Force Base Unit. The activity at Reading was phased down during the summer of 1945, and with the war ending, it was inactivated as an active military airfield on 1 November 1945.

The needs of the postwar Air Force Reserve brought the 2237th Air Force Reserve Training Center to Reading Airport on 26 February 1946, and the airport was designated as an Air Force Reserve base. During the late 1940s, a series of reserve bombardment groups were assigned to the airport, these being:

59th, 451st and 452d Bombardment Squadrons. Also had the 55th Troop Carrier Group assigned, but never equipped.


49th and 51st Bombardment Squadrons


1st, 2d, 3d and 4th Combat Cargo Squadrons


Due to budgetary cutbacks, the Reserve Training Center at Reading was inactivated on 1 May 1950 and reassigned to New Castle County Airportmarker, Delawaremarker. The Air Force closed its facilities at Reading airport and it was returned to full civil control.

On 5 December 1984, Reading Airport was dedicated as Carl Andrew Spaatz Field. Carl Spaatz was a nearby Boyertown, Pennsylvaniamarker native and a World War II General. General Spaatz was the first Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force.

Mid-Atlantic Air Museum

The Mid-Atlantic Air Museummarker is located at Reading Airport. It collects and actively restores historic war planes and classic airliners as well as rare civilian and military aircraft, with large number of historic aircraft on display to the public. It has also embarked on an ambitious project to restore its P-61B-1-NO Black Widow, recovered from New Guineamarker in 1989, to flying condition.

See also



References

  1. FAA Passenger Boarding and All-Cargo Data


External links




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