Tony Reed
Del Norte Triplicate

O f three airlines submitting proposals to provide Essential Air Service to Crescent City, two brought their airplanes to the airport for viewing this week. According to airport officials, one marked the first time a regional jet had ever landed in Crescent City.

On Tuesday evening, a small group of airport employees watched as a Contour Aviation ERJ-135 passenger jet approached from the south over Castle Rock and landed on Runway 36 with plenty of room to spare.

First Officer Damian White said the Contour plane offered a mix of advanced avionics with the ability to still “fly like a pilot.” White said depending on the weight aboard the aircraft, it can land on 2,000 to 3,500 feet of runway. According to GlobalAir.com, Crescent City’s runway is 150 feet wide and 5,000 feet long.

“It’s nice that you have two-north-facing runways,” White said. “We had our choice between 36 and 31. It worked out really well.”

“This thing will stop on a dime,” Contour pilot Cpt. Scot McBride said, “but it needs a little more runway to takeoff.”

“It would serve this route well,” White said of the ERJ-135. “It has 30 seats ... the legroom is amazing, so it would be perfect for something like this.”

Aboard the plane were several officials from Contour, headquartered in Smyrna, Tennessee, who stayed in the city for a couple days.

Boutique Air and Great Lakes Aviation Ltd. also submitted proposals for EAS service using propeller-driven passenger planes. Boutique was scheduled to bring its Pilatus PC-12 single-prop airplane to Crescent City for viewing later today.

Representatives of all three airlines will be making presentations to the Border Coast Regional Airport Authority Board at 2 p.m. Thursday in the Del Norte County Board of Supervisor’s chambers. The deadline for public comment is Oct. 12.

All three proposals can be found online at http://flycrescentcity.com/category/public-documents/ class="Apple-converted-space">

A video of the landing can be found on the Triplicate’s Facebook page.

Reach Tony Reed at treed@triplicate.com

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