JetBlue next to arrive in Memphis? - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

JetBlue next to arrive in Memphis?

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen says he approached the president of JetBlue at a transportation committee meeting about bringing the airline's services to Memphis International Airport.

"Told him Memphis wants you and to consider it, and he said that they're looking at it," says Cohen.

Congressman Cohen says a decision by JetBlue, and even Southwest Airlines, will be based on the economy and passenger traffic in Memphis International Airport.

"They know that lower fares does attract more passengers and so I think that might encourage them," Rep. Cohen said. "The problem of course, Southwest is in Little Rock and it's in Nashville, and people are driving there now. Maybe if people stop driving there, they'd see they need to come to Memphis."

FedEx is also key to JetBlue's decision, according to Cohen. He says JetBlue is already talking with FedEx President Fred Smith.

"Federal Express is really key to all of this," the congressman said. "They fly so many pilots and people in and out of Memphis, and they also leverage their cargo with the airlines. They use some of the commercial passenger craft for transporting FedEx cargo."

Rep. Cohen also announced that the FAA is giving Memphis International Airport nearly $32 million in federal grants to upgrade and improve safety and security at the airport. It's funding Cohen helped bring to the local airport.

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