Business View Magazine | December 2018

150 151 THE BEST WAY TO TRAVEL Yakima Air Terminal AT A GLANCE YAKIMA AIR TERMINAL WHAT: A general aviation and commercial airport WHERE: Yakima, Washington WEBSITE: “I t’s been around since 1928,” says Robert K. Peterson, Airport Director at the Yakima Air Terminal, a general aviation and com- mercial airport three miles south of the City of Yakima, in Yakima County, Washington. “And like a lot of airports in the United States back then, they were just grass fields with a few aircraft and a few hangars or houses to store the aircraft. And then, over time, it evolved to become what we have today.” In 1932, the Airport, once known as McAllister Field, was improved by adding a 2,600-ft.-long gravel landing strip with a drainage system. Shortly afterward, it was graded and surfaced for two runways, both of which were just over 3,000 feet. In 1940, the old runways were converted into taxiways and a new 5,000-ft. runway, as well as a second 4,000-ft. runway, was completed. In 1949, a new passenger terminal was constructed, which also housed the FAA control tower and the local National Weather Service office. In 1974, the FAA built a new control tower and in 1953, its first Instrument Landing System was installed. “Yakima Air Terminal-McAllister Field was op- erated under a joint operations agreement from 1982 onward by the City and the County of Yaki- ma,” explains Peterson, “and it was managed by an independent Board of Directors that did a won- derful job up until 2013 when the County agreed to relinquish ownership. At that time, the City took full ownership of the Airport. Now, it is a depart- ment of the City of Yakima with eight full-time employees and three part-time employees.” Peterson adds that the Airport is self-sufficient, but does rely on the City’s resources to help man- age it. For example, it is the Human Resources Department of the City that oversees staffing. The City also looks after its legal and financial man-