Military Wiki
Rickenbacker International Airport
Airport type Public
Operator Columbus Regional Airport Authority
Serves Columbus, OH
Location Franklin / Pickaway counties, near Columbus, Ohio
Hub for
  • AirNet Express
  • Evergreen International Airlines
Elevation AMSL 744 ft / 227 m
Coordinates 39°48′50″N 082°55′40″W / 39.81389°N 82.92778°W / 39.81389; -82.92778
Direction Length Surface
ft m
5R/23L 12,102 3,689 Asphalt/Concrete
5L/23R 11,937 3,638 Asphalt
Statistics (2005)
Aircraft operations 56,998
Based aircraft 72
Source: Federal Aviation Administration[1]

Rickenbacker International Airport (IATA: LCK, ICAO: KLCK, FAA Location identifier: LCK) is a joint civil-military public airport located 10 miles (16 km) south of the central business district of Columbus, near the village of Lockbourne in extreme southern Franklin County, Ohio, United States. The southern end of the airport extends into northern Pickaway County. The base was named for the famous early aviator and Columbus native Eddie Rickenbacker. It is managed by the Columbus Regional Airport Authority, which also operates Port Columbus International Airport and Bolton Field.[1] Rickenbacker International is used primarily as a cargo airport for the city of Columbus and a growing number of passenger charter carriers are using the airport as well.

The United States Air Force maintains a presence in the form of the Ohio Air National Guard's 121st Air Refueling Wing, the first Air National Guard unit to fly KC-135 Stratotankers. Rickenbacker International is also home of the Ohio Army National Guard's Army Aviation Support Facility #2 and the headquarters for the Ohio Military Reserve, one of the state defense forces of Ohio.


File:Rickenbacker Enter.jpg

Rickenbacker Airport

Rickenbacker used to be run by the Rickenbacker Port Authority, until merging in 2003 with Port Columbus and Bolton field creating the Columbus Regional Airport Authority. As of July 2006, Rickenbacker is the world's 126th busiest cargo airport according to Air Cargo World.[2] Rickenbacker ranks as one of the worlds top 20 fastest growing cargo airports in July 2006 with 112,888 tons, a 15.3% increase from the previous year. This is mainly due to the transfer of AirNet Systems operations from Port Columbus International Airport to Rickenbacker. This number is expected to increase with the introduction of the new intermodal facility that is under construction. As of now it has scheduled service from FedEx Express along with FedEx Feeder contractors, Mountain Air Cargo and CSA Air and UPS Airlines along with contractors Air Cargo Carriers. Multi-weekly 747 freighter service is operated by Evergreen International Airlines, Atlas Air, and Kalitta Air. Another airline based at Rickenbacker is Snow Aviation. Rickenbacker International Airport was also the site for filming all aircraft exterior shots in the movie Air Force One starring Harrison Ford. In 2007, Rickenbacker hosted the Gathering of Mustangs and Legends air show, one of the largest-ever gatherings of operable classic warbirds, especially the P-51 Mustang.

Facilities and aircraft[]

Rickenbacker Diagram

Rickenbacker International Airport covers an area of 4,342 acres (1,757 ha) which contains two runways:[1]

  • Runway 5R/23L: 12,102 x 200 ft (3,689 x 61 m), Surface: Asphalt/Concrete
  • Runway 5L/23R: 11,937 x 150 ft (3,638 x 46 m), Surface: Asphalt

For the 12-month period ending December 31, 2005, the airport had 56,998 aircraft operations, an average of 156 per day: 41% air taxi, 28% military, 23% general aviation and 9% scheduled commercial. There are 72 aircraft based at this airport: 14% single engine, 6% multi-engine, 6% jet aircraft, 44% helicopters and 31% military aircraft.[1]

In December, 2006 PlanetSpace entered negotiations with the Ohio government to build a spaceport at Rickenbacker.[3]

AirNet Express has its headquarters on the airport property.[4]

Passenger airlines and destinations[]

Direct Air served the airport until March 2012.[5] Vision Airlines served the airport until September 2012.

Airlines Destinations 
Allegiant Air Orlando-Sanford,[6] St. Petersburg/Clearwater, FL (effective November 23, 2013)
File:LCK Terminal.jpg

Rickenbacker Terminal

Cargo airline service and Charter Cargo airline service[]

Airlines Destinations 
Cargolux Hong Kong[7]
FedEx Express Indianapolis, Memphis, Newark
FedEx Feeder operated by Mountain Air Cargo Parkersburg (WV)
UPS Airlines Chicago-O'Hare, Lansing, Louisville
Kalitta Air Newark, Anchorage, Hong Kong
AirNet Express Baltimore, Bedford, Lawrence, Buffalo, Charleston, Charlotte, Chicago/DuPage, Cincinnati-Lunken, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky, Cleveland-Hopkins, Cleveland-Lakefront, Columbus, Dallas-Addison, Denver-International, Denver-Centennial, Detroit, Fort Wayne, Houston-Hobby, Kansas City-Wheeler, Los Angeles, Louisville, Milwaukee, New York-Teterboro, Omaha, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Rochester (MN), South Bend, St. Louis, St. Paul, Washington-Dulles
Evergreen International Airlines Singapore
NASA Iowa County, Hampton, VA
Mountain Air Cargo Cedar Rapids, Denver, Parkersburg, WV


The facility was originally opened in June 1942 as Lockbourne Army Airfield (named after the nearby village of Lockbourne). It was then named the Northeastern Training Center of the Army Air Corps, and provided basic pilot training and military support.

During the Cold War the facility was known as Lockbourne Air Force Base and was assigned to the USAF Strategic Air Command. Lockbourne AFB was redesignated Rickenbacker Air Force Base on 18 May 1974, by Department of the Air Force Special Order GA-11 of 6 March 1974, to honor Columbus native Eddie Rickenbacker, the leading American fighter pilot of World War I.

The base was transferred from the Strategic Air Command (SAC) to the Air National Guard and redesignated Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base on 1 April 1980.

The base was recommended for closure by the 1991 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Commission, but as a result of a proposal by the State of Ohio, the 1993 Commission recommended that Rickenbacker ANGB be realigned rather than closed. The Commission decided to retain the 121st Air Refueling Wing and the 160th Air Refueling Group of the Ohio Air National Guard in a military cantonment area at Rickenbacker ANGB instead of realigning to Wright-Patterson AFB. The Air National Guard would continue to operate as tenants of the Rickenbacker Port Authority (RPA) on the RPA's airport and the military facilities were realigned as Rickenbacker Air National Guard Station on 30 September 1994 by the 1991 Congressional Base Realignment and Closure Commission.

In August 2001 a groundbreaking ceremony was held to mark the start of construction for a new, consolidated Navy and Marine Corps Air Reserve Center at Rickenbacker International Airport. The $10 million center, scheduled for completion in early 2003, will be located at the intersection of 2nd Avenue and Club Street adjacent to the Air National Guard facility at Rickenbacker. Being developed by the Navy Reserve, the project will consolidate the Naval Air Reserve Center at Rickenbacker with the Navy and Marine Corps Reserve Center currently located on Yearling Road in Columbus. When completed, the nearly 1,000 Navy and Marine Corps reservists currently located at the two existing reserve centers will shift their activities to this new facility. Once the new center opens, the site of the existing Naval Air Reserve Center at Rickenbacker will be redeveloped by the Columbus Regional Airport Authority, which operates the 5,000-acre (2,023 ha) airport.

In March 2012, Direct Air suspended operations from the airport.[8] The charter carrier was subject to Chapter 7 liquidation on April 12, 2012.[5]

File:Rick Tower.jpg

Rickenbacker Tower

Rickenbacker Airport

See also[]


 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 , effective 2007-07-05
  2. Air Cargo World: "Top Cargo Airports of the World" with focus on Africa and Asia. Retrieved July 8, 2007.
  3. "Spaceport Ohio?". Personal Spaceflight. 2006-12-02. 
  4. "Contact." AirNet Express. Retrieved on February 12, 2011. "Corporate Office: AirNet Systems, Inc. 7250 Star Check Drive Columbus, OH 43217."
  5. 5.0 5.1 Heath, Dan (April 12, 2012). "Direct Air bankruptcy goes to Chapter 7". Plattsburgh Press-Republican. Retrieved April 16, 2012. 
  6. Allegiant offers flights between Orlando, Columbus, Associated Press, August 15, 2012
  7. Solomon, Adina (June 14, 2013). "Cargolux adds Hong Kong-Ohio service". Air Cargo World. Retrieved July 6, 2013. 
  8. SC-Based Charter Airline Cancels Flights, Associated Press, March 13, 2012

External links[]

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