Patrons of the Raleigh-Durham International Airport can now easily enjoy Ladurée macarons or climb the Eiffel Tower with a non-stop flight to Paris. Thanks to Delta passengers can connect to more than 70 destinations throughout Asia, Africa, Europe and the Middle East with one easy stop at Paris Charles De Gaulle.
While residents of the region are one now closer to fresh macaroons and luxurious European destinations, this flight also brings a positive impact to the region's economy.
"New service to an international gateway such as Paris will maximize the Triangle's reach as a global economic player," said Adrienne Cole.
Cole is Wake County Economic Development's Executive Director and sits on the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority Board, the board that governs the Raleigh-Durham International Airport.
According to the Raleigh-Durham Authority Board in 2014, N.C. State Economist Michael Walden determined that the economic impact of one international flight will result in an additional $25 million in net economic spending in the Triangle and create 100 new jobs within the first year.
Over a 25 year period, Walden found, the impact of one international flight will boost the region’s GDP by $1.4B, add 14,000 new jobs and contribute $272 million to public entities.
"Today’s flight to Paris represents a watershed moment for our region in terms of economic development, regional cooperation, and global prominence. This afternoon we become the only non-hub market in the United States with two daily nonstop transatlantic flights. We did so via the leadership of Raleigh-Durham International Airport professional staff and board members working in concert with the public and private sectors to elevate awareness and mitigate risk. Without this cooperation, there would be no flight; with this strong partnership, RDU has doubled the number of connections to European gateways which will increase our attractiveness for new and expanding companies," said Joe Milazzo II, PE, Executive Director of the Regional Transportation Alliance business coalition.
In December 2014, The Regional Transportation Alliance business coalition launched the Air Service Advancement Project, a three-year marketing initiative to recruit and promote new international service from RDU, with the hopes of landing a flight like RDU to Paris.
"The RTA business coalition is committed to ensuring the success of both our new Paris and our existing London flight, and going forward, the fastest-growing market on the Atlantic seaboard will continue to elevate our game," said Milazzo.
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