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Southwest Thinks It Has All the Gates It Needs When Love Field Restrictions Are Gone

Excerpt from Dallas Morning News

Oct 26, 2013 12:00 pm

Skift Take

With the opening of Dallas Love Field next year to nonstop flights beyond the Wright Amendment-defined states, Southwest is licking its chops and could boost its daily flights from the airport to around 160, up from the current 120. Low cost carrier competitors, which are basically shut out of Love Field because of lack of gates, aren’t happy.

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Joyce Marshall  / Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT

Southwest Airlines is ready to celebrate its first minute of freedom from the Wright Amendment at Dallas Love Field, even though it's a year away. The Dallas-based airline unveiled a countdown clock at its headquarters, reminding employees, passengers and North Texans that starting on Oct. 13, 2014, it will be able to fly nonstop anywhere in the U.S. from its Love Field home. Joyce Marshall / Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT

The agreement to open up Love Field in late 2014 permanently limits Southwest Airlines Co. to just 16 gates at the Dallas airport, which raises the question: Will that be enough?

Southwest chairman and chief executive Gary Kelly isn’t worried. He says Southwest will have all the gates it needs at Love Field when the Wright amendment expires on Oct. 13, 2014.

“I think 16 gates is plenty. I think we’ll have all we need,” Kelly told analysts and reporters Thursday as he discussed Southwest’s earnings. “It’s a little bit premature to speculate on what the potential is out of this market, but we’re excited about the opportunity.”

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