Eppley Airfield

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Eppley Airfield
OMA Eppley Airfield Logo.png
OMA Logo
OMA airport logo2.png
Airport Authority wordmark
Owner/OperatorOmaha Airport Authority
ServesEastern Nebraska and Western Iowa
LocationOmaha, Nebraska, U.S.
Elevation AMSL984 ft / 300 m
Coordinates41°18′04″N 95°53′43″W / 41.3012°N 95.8954°W / 41.3012; -95.8954
FAA Airport diagram
FAA Airport diagram
OMA is located in Nebraska
Location of airport in Nebraska
OMA is located in the United States
OMA (the United States)
Direction Length Surface
ft m
14R/32L 9,502 2,896 Asphalt/Concrete
14L/32R 8,501 2,591 Concrete
18/36 8,154 2,485 Asphalt/Concrete
Aircraft operations (2018)101,510
Based aircraft (2018)163
Total Passengers Served (2018)5,043,194
Cargo handled (2018)154,189,840 lbs.
Sources: FAA[1] and airport web site[2]

Eppley Airfield (IATA: OMA, ICAO: KOMA, FAA LID: OMA) is an international airport three miles northeast of downtown Omaha, Nebraska, in Douglas County, Nebraska, United States. It is the largest airport in Nebraska, serving ten times more passengers than all other Nebraska airports combined.

The airport occupies 2,650 acres (1,070 ha)[1] and handles about 130 daily airline flights to 34 non-stop destinations with 8 airlines.[3] Eppley had its busiest year in 2018, serving over five million passengers.[4]


Eppley Airfield began as an extension of Levi Carter Park near East Omaha in 1925. That year, the City of Omaha acquired 200 acres of cleared land on the east side of Carter Lake. Almost immediately, planes started landing and taking off there. A lawsuit was launched against the City in 1927 when a group wanted to build a hangar there. The lawsuit failed and the land was called both the Omaha Municipal Airport and the American Legion Airport.[5]

The April 1957 Official Airline Guide shows 42 scheduled airline departures per day, with 23 by United Airlines and 19 by Braniff International Airways. The airport is named for Eugene C. Eppley, founder of the Eppley Hotel chain, from whose estate $1.0 million was used to ready the then-Omaha Municipal Airport for jet aircraft in 1959-60.[6] This was matched by the federal government and improvements were made to handle jets at the airport, which was renamed Eppley Airfield in his honor in 1960.[7] The first jets to land in Omaha were United Airlines B720s in August 1960.

The terminal building, opened in 1961, was designed by James C. Buckley, Inc.[8] Concourse B opened in 1970[9] and was remodeled when Concourse A opened in 1986.[10]

Hubs and operations[edit]

Midwest Airlines, then known as Midwest Express Airlines, operated a hub at Eppley Airfield from 1995 to 2002 with flights to Milwaukee, Newark, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Orlando, San Diego, and Washington–Reagan; the airport remained a focus city with nonstop flights to Milwaukee and Washington–Reagan until the airline merged with Frontier Airlines in 2009.[11]

During 2017, Southwest Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines were the first-, second-, and third-largest carriers and served 33.7 percent, 21.6 percent, and 18.7 percent, of passengers, respectively.[2]

The airport has an on-site U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility that handles international, charter, and private flights. Eppley's first commercial, international flight began May 1, 2018, when Air Canada Express launched a daily flight to Toronto Pearson International Airport.


Parking garage[edit]

In April 2017, the Omaha Airport Authority began construction on an approximately $71 million, six-story parking garage and new suspended-above-ground rental car terminal building. The new garage is being built north of the existing six-story garage including a consolidated rental car facility between the new garage and existing terminal connected to both via a covered skywalk. The project is expected to be completed in 2019. The first phase will provide 2,200 parking stalls, with 850 designated for rental cars and 1,350 for public parking. While the existing rental car counters in the terminal are fully operational, the temporary rental car facility is located in the airport's "canopy lot." Shuttle service to the temporary rental car facility is provided by the Omaha Airport Authority. Access to the shuttle is located at a marked area in the temporary rental car facility and outside Door 3 of the main terminal.[12]


Construction and upgrades are planned for Eppley Airfield's facilities and infrastructure based on passenger growth milestones. An expansion to runway 18/36 will be added in order to enable larger aircraft to land, as well as an enlargement of taxiway A. Concourses A and B will be joined together by a long corridor, and expanded in the northern direction, adding 8 gates. This expansion will also consolidate passenger security screening. After expansion, there will be a total of 28 gates. On either side of the unified terminal, the ramp will be extended for overnight aircraft parking.

In January 2016, Eppley Airfield completed expansion of its on-site United States Customs and Border Protection facility (CBP) to provide greater customs and inspection services for international passengers. Eppley Airfield is classified as a "Customs Landing Rights Airport" for international flights by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Scheduled, commercial international service began on May 1, 2018 when Air Canada Express launched a daily flight to Toronto–Pearson. The airport also handles international cargo, charter, and private flights.


The airport is northeast of downtown Omaha in east Omaha. Although the airport is in Nebraska on the west side of the Missouri River, it is surrounded on the east, west, and south by the State of Iowa: the Missouri River formerly formed an oxbow west of the land that became Eppley Airfield. The river cut off the oxbow during an 1877 flood, leaving behind Carter Lake on a portion of its former course; the Supreme Court ruled in 1893 that though the land cut off by the river's changed route now lay west of the Missouri, it remained part of Iowa. This land eventually became the city of Carter Lake, Iowa.[13]


Central Terminal[edit]

The Central Terminal contains the ground transportation center and rental car counters.

South Terminal[edit]

Concourse A includes gates A1 through A10, baggage claims 1 through 3, and serves Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air (ticket counter), American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and Frontier Airlines. Gate assignments: Alaska Airlines (A9), American Airlines (A6-A8, A10), Delta Air Lines (A2-A5), and Frontier Airlines (A1).

North Terminal[edit]

Concourse B includes gates B11 through B20, baggage claims 4 through 6, and serves Air Canada Express, Allegiant Air (gate), Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines. Gate assignments: Air Canada Express (B15), Allegiant Air (B19), Southwest Airlines (B16-B18), and United Airlines (B11-B14). Gate B20 is unassigned.

Airlines and destinations[edit]


Air Canada Express Toronto–Pearson (ends October 4, 2019)[14] [15]
Alaska Airlines San Diego, Seattle/Tacoma
Seasonal: Portland (OR)
Allegiant Air Las Vegas, Orlando/Sanford, Phoenix–Mesa, St. Petersburg/Clearwater
Seasonal: Destin/Fort Walton Beach, Punta Gorda (FL)[17]
American Airlines Dallas/Fort Worth, Phoenix–Sky Harbor
Seasonal: Chicago–O'Hare
American Eagle Charlotte, Chicago–O'Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Philadelphia
Seasonal: Miami
Delta Air Lines Atlanta, Minneapolis/St. Paul
Seasonal: Detroit, Salt Lake City
Delta Connection Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles (begins November 11, 2019),[21] Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York–LaGuardia, Salt Lake City, Washington–National [20]
Frontier Airlines Denver, Las Vegas
Seasonal: Fort Myers, Orlando,[17] Philadelphia
Southwest Airlines Chicago–Midway, Dallas–Love, Denver, Houston–Hobby, Las Vegas, Phoenix–Sky Harbor, St. Louis, San Diego, Washington–National
Seasonal: Los Angeles (ends January 5, 2020),[17] Nashville, Orlando
United Airlines Chicago–O'Hare, Denver, San Francisco
Seasonal: Houston–Intercontinental
United Express Chicago–O'Hare, Denver, Houston–Intercontinental, Newark, San Francisco [24]


Ameriflight Beatrice, Grand Island, Kearney, Norfolk
AirNet Express Des Moines
DHL Aviation Cincinnati, St. Louis
FedEx Express Grand Island, Indianapolis, Kearney, Memphis, North Platte
UPS Airlines Billings, Louisville, Ontario, Portland (OR), Reno/Tahoe


Top destinations[edit]

Busiest domestic routes from OMA (July 2018 - April 2019)[4]
Rank City Passengers Carriers
1 Denver, Colorado 314,000 Frontier, Southwest, United
2 Chicago–O'Hare, Illinois 236,000 American, United
3 Atlanta, Georgia 213,000 Delta
4 Phoenix–Sky Harbor, Arizona 177,000 American, Southwest
5 Chicago–Midway, Illinois 173,000 Southwest
6 Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas 150,000 American
7 Las Vegas, Nevada 145,000 Allegiant, Frontier, Southwest
8 Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota 129,000 Delta
9 St. Louis, Missouri 111,000 Southwest
10 Houston–Intercontinental 84,000 United

Carrier shares[edit]

Carrier shares: (2018)[25]
Carrier Passengers (arriving and departing)

Annual traffic[edit]

Annual passenger traffic (enplaned + deplaned) at OMA, 2000 – 2018[26]
2000's 2010's
Year Passengers Change Year Passengers Change
2000 3,814,440 0N/A0 2010 4,287,428 Increase01.65%0
2001 3,653,521 Decrease04.21%0 2011 4,212,399 Decrease01.75%0
2002 3,608,231 Decrease01.23%0 2012 4,127,344 Decrease02.02%0
2003 3,667,190 Increase01.63%0 2013 4,042,333 Decrease02.06%0
2004 3,868,217 Increase05.48%0 2014 4,119,730 Increase01.91%0
2005 4,193,046 Increase08.4%0 2015 4,169,467 Increase01.21%0
2006 4,229,856 Increase00.88%0 2016 4,349,486 Increase04.32%0
2007 4,421,274 Increase04.53%0 2017 4,611,906 Increase06.03%0
2008 4,370,137 Decrease01.16%0 2018 5,043,194 Increase09.35%0
2009 4,217,718 Decrease03.49%0

Ground transportation[edit]

Metro Transit Line 16[27] provides limited weekday-only rush hour service southbound toward downtown and northbound toward the North Omaha Transit Center. Passenger access is located directly outside the central terminal.

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • On December 6, 1978, a Douglas DC-6 operated by the Mexican Air Force, a military flight bound for San Antonio International Airport, suffered an engine fire on takeoff and crashed into a flood-control levee at the airport boundary 1/2 mile north of Eppley, killing all 7 occupants on board. The aircraft was undergoing maintenance for 3 days and leaking oil from one of its engines when departing Eppley.[28]

See also[edit]



  1. ^ a b FAA Airport Master Record for OMA (Form 5010 PDF), effective June 21, 2018
  2. ^ a b Eppley Airfield, official web site
  3. ^ "Non-Stop Destinations". www.flyoma.com. Retrieved 2017-06-27.
  4. ^ a b "RITA BTS Transtats - OMA". www.transtats.bts.gov. July 28, 2019.
  5. ^ Leslie R Valentine, "The Development of the Omaha Municipal Airfield, 1924–1930," Nebraska History 61 (1980): 400–420.
  6. ^ Eppley Grant of $1 Million Gives Omaha Jet Field - Lincoln Evening Journal, 1959-12-31
  7. ^ "Municipal airport new name 'Eppley Airfield'," Omaha World-Herald, January 13, 1960
  8. ^ American Aviation. 24. 1960.
  9. ^ Mezzy, Dick (July 5, 1970). "Eppley Elevated Terminal Ready". Lincoln Star. p. 16. Retrieved January 22, 2015.
  10. ^ "Airport Authority of the City of Omaha, Airport Facilities Revenue Bonds" (PDF). www.fpr.net. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 19 December 2015.
  11. ^ "Frontier Airlines and Midwest to fly under one name - Apr. 13, 2010".
  12. ^ Omaha World-Herald. "Easing the Parking Crunch: 6-story, 2,200-stall Garage Coming to Eppley Airfield in 2017." Omaha.com. Omaha World-Herald, 18 Feb. 2015. Web. 28 Apr. 2015. <http://www.omaha.com/money/easing-the-parking-crunch--story--stall-garage-coming/article_790a6390-b6d2-11e4-9734-039b1a169392.html>.
  13. ^ Nebraska v. Iowa, 406 U.S. 117 (1972).
  14. ^ "Air Canada discontinues Omaha service in October 2019". routesonline.com. August 6, 2019.
  15. ^ "Flight Schedules". Air Canada.
  16. ^ "Flight Timetable". Retrieved 29 January 2017.
  17. ^ a b c https://www.flyoma.com/flight-information/non-stop-destinations/
  18. ^ "Allegiant Airlines Interactive Route Map". Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  19. ^ a b "Flight schedules and notifications". Retrieved 7 January 2017.
  20. ^ a b "FLIGHT SCHEDULES". Retrieved 7 January 2017.
  21. ^ "Delta to launch Los Angeles-Omaha service in November 2019". news.delta.com. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
  22. ^ "Frontier". Retrieved 7 January 2017.
  23. ^ "Check Flight Schedules". Retrieved 7 January 2017.
  24. ^ a b "Timetable". Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  25. ^ "Traffic Statistics - December 2017" (PDF). Retrieved April 14, 2018.
  26. ^ "Omaha Airport Authority -". Omaha Airport Authority.
  27. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-01-13. Retrieved 2013-02-05.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  28. ^ Accident description for TP-0203 at the Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved on January 23, 2019.

External links[edit]