Historic Vote for International Travel at William P. Hobby Airport

Council Member Melissa Noriega—June 1, 2012 in Articles

Wednesday’s historic vote at City Council on the Memorandum of Agreement between the City of Houston and Southwest Airlines allows for the creation of five international gates and a Federal Inspection Service Facility at William P. Hobby Airport. This action opens the door to international travel out of Hobby Airport to the Caribbean, Mexico and South America and more importantly provides Houston and the region with another option for international travel.

The global economic dynamics of the City of Houston will be changed with Wednesday’s council action. Both airports, both airlines, the City, and the region have the opportunity to prosper from the competition and increased economic development generated by the creation of international air travel at William P. Hobby Airport.

My “Yes” vote came after community input received at the Joint Council Committee meetings held at City Hall, at the IAH, the Hobby areas and after careful review of over 16,580 emails, numerous letters, conversations, meetings, and phone calls. This decision is the right decision for the City of Houston and the region. The City of Houston is a leader in the State of Texas and the US and with this historic vote, Houston becomes a global leader bringing more international visitors into the City of Houston and the region. Thank you to my co-chair, Council Member Stephen Costello, for his leadership at the Joint committee meetings at City Hall and in the community. I thank vice-chairs, Council Member Oliver Pennington and Council Member C.O. Bradford, as well as HTV, the unsung heroes, for their excellence and professional support before, during and after every meeting.

Thank you to every person who took the time to contact our office by email, letter or phone call and who came to the meetings to listen and participate. Your input was valuable and appreciated.