|Billings Logan International Airport|
|Owner||City of Billings|
|Operator||Billing Department of Aviation & Transit|
|Elevation AMSL||3,652 ft / 1,113 m|
Billings Logan International Airport (IATA: BIL, ICAO: KBIL, FAA LID: BIL) is two miles northwest of downtown Billings, in Yellowstone County, Montana. It is the second largest airport in Montana, having been surpassed by Bozeman in both number of gates as well as annual enplanements in recent years, and is owned by the city of Billings. The airport is on top of the Rims, a 500-foot (150 m) cliff overlooking the downtown core. BIL covers 2,300 acres (9.3 km2.) of land.
The National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011-2015 categorized it as a primary commercial service airport (more than 10,000 enplanements per year).Federal Aviation Administration records say the airport had 387,368 passenger boardings (enplanements) in calendar year 2013, 388,329 in 2010 and 397,073 in 2009.
Billings Logan International Airport has scheduled nonstop flights to several airline hubs such as Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Portland, OR, Salt Lake City and Seattle. Billings also serves as a small hub for Cape Air, a commuter airline which operates nonstop flights with Cessna 402 prop aircraft to Glasgow, Glendive, Havre, Sidney and Wolf Point in Montana.
The "First" flight was made on Memorial Day 1913, with much publicity, Dr. Bell took off from Billings flying to Park City and back, 40 miles (64 km) round trip. This flight was captured by a local artist named J.K. Ralston in his painting entitled "First Flight," displayed in the airport lobby.
In 1927 The City of Billings approved $5,000 and 400 acres (162 ha) on top of the Rims to build a runway. The 1,820-foot (550 m) runway and small administrative building was built by horse-drawn equipment; the airport opened on May 29, 1928.
In 1933 Northwest Airlines introduced the first scheduled passenger air service. Northwest was serving Billings in 1935 as a stop on a route between Chicago and Seattle flown with Lockheed Model 10 Electra twin prop airliners. During the 1950s and early 1960s, Northwest operated Douglas DC-3, Douglas DC-4, Douglas DC-6B and Douglas DC-7C propeller aircraft into Billings.
Inland Air Lines was serving the airport in 1939 as a stop on a route between Denver and Great Falls.Western Airlines then acquired Inland Air Lines and in 1944 was serving Billings with Douglas DC-3 and Lockheed Model 18 Lodestar twin prop aircraft on the route between Denver and Great Falls. Western operated Convair 240 and Douglas DC-6B propeller aircraft into the airport during the 1950s and early 1960s.
The original Frontier Airlines (1950-1986) was serving Billings in 1950 with Douglas DC-3 aircraft operated on routes to Denver and Salt Lake City. By 1962, Frontier had introduced Convair 340 aircraft on its flights into the airport and would later serve Billings with Boeing 737-200 jets as well as with Convair 580 and de Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter turboprops.
Improvements over the years include runway lights in 1935 to the new 120-foot (37 m) air traffic control tower in 2005. Major terminal expansions were made in 1958, 1972, and 1992. In early 2006 the airport added electronic monitors giving info on arrivals and departures.
The name changed from the Billings Municipal Airport to Billings Logan Field in 1957, after Dick Logan, the airport manager, died. In 1971 the airport became Billings Logan International Airport.
By 1961, Northwest Airlines was operating Lockheed L-188 Electra propjet service into the airport on a routing of New York Idlewild Airport (IDL, now JFK Airport) - Detroit (DTW) - Milwaukee (MKE) - Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP) - Bismarck, ND (BIS) - Billings (BIL) - Great Falls (GTF) - Spokane (GEG) - Yakima (YKM) - Seattle (SEA).
The jet age arrived in Billings by 1966 when Northwest introduced Boeing 727-100 "Fan Jet" flights in addition to its Electra turboprop service. In 1968, Northwest was operating nonstop 727 jet service from the airport to Chicago O'Hare International Airport, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Great Falls and Spokane as well as direct, no change of plane 727 flights to New York LaGuardia Airport, Newark, Washington, D.C. National Airport, Detroit, Cleveland, Milwaukee, Seattle and Portland, OR.
Western Airlines was serving Billings in 1966 with Lockheed L-188 Electra turboprops with an example routing being Los Angeles (LAX) - San Diego (SAN) - Phoenix (PHX) - Denver (DEN) - Cheyenne (CYS) - Casper (CPR) - Sheridan (SHR) - Billings (BIL). Western was also operating direct Electra propjet service to Calgary (YYC) via a stop in Great Falls (GTF) during the late 1960s. By the early 1970s, Western was operating all of its flights into the airport with Boeing 737-200 jetliners. In 1979, Western was operating nonstop Boeing 727-200 service to both Minneapolis/St. Paul and Seattle as well as flying nonstop Boeing 737-200 service to Denver, Great Falls and Salt Lake City.
For at least part of each year from the late 1970s to early 1980s, Billings was served by wide body McDonnell Douglas DC-10 jetliners operated by Northwest Airlines. In 1979, Northwest was flying DC-10 service on a round trip routing of Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) - Detroit (DTW) - Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD) - Billings (BIL) - Great Falls (GTF) - Spokane (GEG) - Seattle (SEA). By 1982, the airline was operating the DC-10 on a round trip routing of Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP) - Billings - Great Falls - Spokane - Seattle. The DC-10 was the largest aircraft ever to be operated in scheduled passenger service into the airport. Northwest also served Billings with Boeing 727-200, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-30, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-50, McDonnell Douglas MD-80 and Airbus A319 jetliners over the years.
In 1983, four airlines were operating mainline jet service into the airport: Continental Airlines with Douglas DC-9-10 and McDonnell Douglas DC-9-30 nonstop flights to Denver and Great Falls, the original Frontier Airlines (1950-1986) with Boeing 737-200 nonstop flights to Denver, Great Falls and Helena, Northwest Airlines with Boeing 727-200 nonstop flights to Great Falls, Helena, Minneapolis/St. Paul and Spokane with direct service to Chicago, Seattle and Portland, OR, and Western Airlines with Boeing 737-200 nonstop flights to Salt Lake City with direct service to Los Angeles and San Francisco. By 1985, Northwest had once again added nonstop service to Chicago O'Hare International Airport flown with Boeing 727-200 aircraft while United Airlines had begun flying Boeing 737-200 nonstop service to Denver. Also in 1985, the airport had commuter airline service operated by Big Sky Airlines, Centennial Airlines and Pioneer Airlines with the latter air carrier operating as Continental Express on behalf of Continental Airlines.
Another airline which operated jet service into Billings was Horizon Air which in 1999 was operating Fokker F28 Fellowship twin jets with nonstop flights to Seattle on behalf of Alaska Airlines. By 2003, the airline was serving Billings with Canadair CRJ-700 regional jets. Horizon Air continues to serve the airport at the present time on behalf of Alaska Airlines with the Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 propjet which is the largest and fastest member of the de Havilland Canada DHC-8 regional turboprop family of aircraft. Additional airlines operating regional jets from the airport in the past included America West Express operated by Mesa Airlines with Canadair CRJ-200 aircraft and Frontier JetExpress flown by Horizon Air with Canadair CRJ-700 aircraft with both air carriers operating nonstop service to Denver.
Big Sky Airlines was a commuter air carrier that was based in Billings from 1978 to 2008. Big Sky primarily operated small turboprop airliners including the Beechcraft 1900D, British Aerospace BAe Jetstream 31, Fairchild Swearingen Metroliner (Metro III and Metro 23 models) and Handley Page Jetstream as well as Cessna prop aircraft. The airline operated nonstop flights from the airport to Butte, MT, Casper, WY, Denver, CO, Glasgow, MT, Great Falls, MT, Helena, MT, Lewistown, MT, Miles City, MT, Sidney, MT and Wolf Point, MT at various times during its existence. In addition, Big Sky operated direct, no change of plane flights from the airport to Bismarck, ND, Boise, ID, Dickinson, ND, Havre, MT, Jamestown, ND, Kalispell, MT, Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN, Missoula, MT, Moses Lake, WA, Seattle, WA, Spokane, WA and Williston, ND at various times during its existence as well. Besides operating as an independent air carrier, Big Sky also operated Northwest Airlink service from Billings via a code sharing agreement with Northwest Airlines in 1989.
The Aviation and Transit Board governs BIL, with seven members, each appointed for four-year terms. It is required of the position of a board member to possess the qualifications fit for the Mayor's office. With the consent of the Council, the Mayor elects the board members. No board member may be reelected once his or her term expires. The purpose of the Aviation and Transit Board is not only to help govern the operations of the Airport, but also to act as a Citizen's Advisory Board to the City Council. They are to make sure that city policies are implemented and carried out. Shortcomings are to be reported and recommendations are to be made to the City Council.
Billings Logan International Airport has three runways. The primary runway is Runway 10L/28R with a length of 10,518 feet and width of 150 feet. ILS/DME on 28R is at 3,738 feet MSL is the lowest approach. The second runway is Runway 07/25 with a length of 5,501 feet and width of 75 feet; this runway serves as the crosswind runway. The final runway is Runway 10R/28L with a length of 3,801 feet and width of 75 feet. This runway serves as the primary runway for single engine and light piston aircraft. All three runways are asphalt.
There are nine taxiways currently in use. Taxiway A runs parallel to Runway 10L/28R, serves as the last exit of Runway 10L and connects to the terminal area. Taxiway B runs through Runway 10L/28R as an access taxiway to the Northern Air Tanker Base. Three Taxiways, C, E F, serve as exit taxiways that vary in width to serve certain size aircraft. Taxiway D intersects Runway 10L/28R and serves as a northern exit point for Runway 25. Two taxiways (G and H) provide all exits for Runway 10R/28L and Runway 7. Finally, Taxiway J is the primary taxiway from the terminal area to the cargo ramps. Two hotspots exist on the airfield side of operations. Hotspot 1 is located at the intersection of Runway 10R/28L and Runway 7/25. Furthermore, Hotspot 2 is located at the intersection of Taxiway C and Runway 10L/28R.
In 2015, the airport had an average of 222 aircraft operations per day: 54% general aviation, 33% air taxi, 12% airline, and 1% military. 170 aircraft were then based at the airport: 56% single-engine, 33% multi-engine, 9% jet, and 3% helicopter.
|Alaska Airlines||Portland (OR), Seattle/Tacoma|
|Allegiant Air||Las Vegas, Phoenix/Mesa
Seasonal: Los Angeles
|American Eagle||Dallas/Fort Worth|
|Cape Air||Glasgow (MT), Glendive, Havre, Sidney (MT), Wolf Point|
|Delta Air Lines||Minneapolis/St. Paul, Salt Lake City
|Delta Connection||Minneapolis/St. Paul, Salt Lake City|
|FedEx Express||Denver, Great Falls, Memphis, Sioux Falls|
|UPS Airlines||Denver, Louisville, Omaha, Ontario|
|2||Salt Lake City, Utah||81,000||Delta|
|3||Minneapolis/St Paul, Minnesota||79,000||Delta|
|7||Las Vegas, Nevada||15,000||Allegiant|
|9||Sidney, Montana||8,000||Cape Air|
|10||Wolf Point, Montana||4,000||Cape Air|