LB Airport Adds $11 Billion to Local Economy, According to CSULB Study

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long beach airportThe Long Beach Airport Area Complex supports 43,000 jobs and generates more than $11 billion into the regional economy, according to a new study that confirms the airport’s positive economic impact on the community.

“The Long Beach Airport is a powerful economic engine that supports thousands of well-paying jobs,” said Mayor Bob Foster. “The Airport is not only important to Long Beach, but vital to the entire region’s economic growth.”

The study was conducted by California State University, Long Beach Economics Professors Joseph P. Magaddino, Ph.D. and Lisa M. Grobar, Ph.D.

“As an integral component in our transportation and economic system, the Long Beach Airport is a vital gateway to our City and the region,” said Councilmember Gerrie Schipske, who represents the 5th District. “Furthermore, capital improvements are making the Airport an even more welcoming and pleasant experience.” 

LGB encompasses 1,166 acres and is home to commercial, corporate and general aviation services, flight schools, air cargo, manufacturing, and two Class A business parks. The Airport Area Complex houses approximately 5 percent of all Long Beach business establishments and 9 percent of all jobs.

Impact of Long Beach Airport on the Economy

According to the study:

  • The Long Beach Airport is directly responsible for supporting nearly 18,000 local jobs, or nine percent of all jobs in Long Beach.
  • These 18,000 jobs, in turn, created an additional 25,000 jobs, raising the total employment impact within the region to 43,000 jobs.
  • The average employment wage on the Airport’s complex is $78,000. This is 50 percent higher than the Los Angeles County average.
  • Annual related payroll for the Long Beach Area Complex was $1.4 billion; while total regional earnings surpass $2.6 billion.
  • The value of output directly associated with the enterprises on site at the Long Beach Airport Area Complex is $6.2 billion. At the regional level, with indirect and induced impacts, this value increased to almost $11 billion in goods and services.
  • An estimated 59,000 overnight visitors and flight crews used LGB in 2011, spending $53.4 million within the City of Long Beach.
  • LGB is in the midst of more than $120 million in major construction upgrades, including modernization of its historic terminal. This construction has and will produce more than 300 jobs annually through 2014.
  • In addition to the modernization project, LGB has an annual construction outlay of $10 million to maintain its runways and infrastructure. The ongoing refurbishment generates 51 jobs with an annual average payroll of $71,000.

“We are not surprised to learn that LGB remains a bright spot in a time of economic uncertainty. This analysis confirms that your airport is extremely important to our local economy,” said Airport Director Mario Rodriguez.

The study was based on data obtained from 2011. LGB is a self-supporting enterprise of the City of Long Beach and does not receive taxpayer revenue.

“If there was any revelation in the study it was that the market share of passengers using LGB increased during the recession. Long Beach was the only regional airport to do so,” said Dr. Magaddino.

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