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Orlando International Airport

Orlando International Airport
Airport information
Airport typePublic
OwnerGreater Orlando Aviation Authority (GOAA)
ServesOrlando, Florida, USA
LocationOrlando, Florida, USA
HubAirTran Airways
Elevation29 m (96 ft)
Aircraft operations391,745 (2006)
Passengers34,877,899 (2010)

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Orlando International Airport is a major international airport located 6 nmi (11.1 km) southeast of the central business district of Orlando. It is the second busiest airport in Florida, after Miami International Airport. It is the 13th busiest airport in the United States and the 29th busiest airport in the world by passenger traffic.

The airport serves as a focus city for Southwest Airlines, JetBlue Airways, and AirTran Airways. The airport hosts AirTran's corporate headquarters and operations center, though the airline maintains its main hub of operations at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Atlanta, Georgia. Southwest Airlines is currently the airport's largest carrier in terms of passengers traveled; SWA carried one-fifth of all passenger traffic at MCO in 2006. They will increase their presence at the airport once they complete their merger with AirTran.

The airport code MCO stands for the airport's former name, McCoy Air Force Base, a Strategic Air Command (SAC) installation named for Colonel Michael Norman Wright McCoy, USAF, commander of the 321st Bombardment Wing at the then-Pinecastle Air Force Base. Col McCoy died in the crash of a B-47 Stratojet during the annual Strategic Air Command (SAC) Bombing and Navigation Competition that was held at the base in 1957. Pinecastle AFB was later renamed McCoy AFB in his honor the following year. McCoy AFB later became home to the 306th Bombardment Wing operating the B-52 Stratofortress and the KC-135 Stratotanker. In the early 1960s, with the advent of commercial jet airline service to the Orlando area, the installation became a joint civil-military facility. Following the Vietnam War, McCoy AFB was identified for closure and all permanent party Air Force flight operations ceased in early 1975. The facility was briefly known as Orlando-McCoy Jetport until being renamed as Orlando International Airport.

The Greater Orlando area is also served by Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB), and more indirectly by Daytona Beach International Airport (DAB), Melbourne International Airport (MLB), and Tampa International Airport (TPA).

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