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A Cape Air worker unloads luggage from one of the airline's nine-seat Cessna 402 airplanes from Boston at the Adirondack Regional Airport in Lake Clear in April 2012. Photo: Chris Knight/<a href="https://www.adirondackdailyenterprise.com/">Adirondack Daily Enterprise</a><br />(Enterprise photo -- Chris Knight)
A Cape Air worker unloads luggage from one of the airline's nine-seat Cessna 402 airplanes from Boston at the Adirondack Regional Airport in Lake Clear in April 2012. Photo: Chris Knight/Adirondack Daily Enterprise
(Enterprise photo -- Chris Knight)

Flights from Lake Clear to the NYC area are coming this summer

Cape Air has announced plans to provide a daily round-trip flight between the Westchester County Airport in White Plains and Adirondack Regional Airport in Lake Clear this summer.

The service will begin June 26 and run six days a week through Labor Day. It's designed to give local travelers access to the New York City market. Local officials are also hopeful it could bring tourists from the city to the Adirondacks.

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Reported by

Chris Knight
Adirondack Correspondent

The announcement of the White Plains flights comes a month after Cape Air was awarded a four-year, $1.8 million annual federal subsidy to continue providing flights between Boston and Lake Clear.

When Cape Air applied last year to renew that subsidy, it sought extra funds to add a daily round-trip to White Plains. The proposal was backed by a group of local residents, some of the area's largest employers and the region's state and federal politicians, but it wasn't picked by the U.S. Department of Transportation because it was seen as too costly and outside the Essential Air Service program's mandate.

In recent years, Cape Air has provided a fourth daily round-trip to and from Boston in summertime, without a subsidy, to meet demand. Now it will make that fourth flight go to White Plains instead.

Jacqueline Donohoo, Cape Air's Northeast marketing manager said there's been a demand for service to the New York City market since the airline first started serving the Lake Clear airport in 2008.

"There's been a huge, I guess you could call it an outcry in the community, requesting service to New York, from both the public and private sectors," she said. "It's been something we've wanted to accomplish and begin, and now we have the privilege to do it."

The cost of the new service for now seems to be roughly double Cape Air's rate to Boston, which averages $200 to $300 per round-trip ticket. The White Plains service will be higher because it's not federally subsidized.

Corey Hurwitch, manager of the Adirondack Regional Airport, said he'd like to see the White Plains service be expanded year-round. He's hopeful it will bring visitors from New York City to the Adirondacks.

"I think a lot of it is going to open a new market for tourists to come up here, and even people who are already driving up here, it's going to be much more convenient for them," he said.

In the six years since Cape Air took over service in Lake Clear, the number of passengers flying to and from the airport has increased from 8,100 to nearly 12,000. The company also recently announced plans to open a ticket office and regional call center in a downtown Saranac Lake storefront.

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