And why the development at Grenchen Airport reflects the regional dynamic
François Scheidegger and Grenchen city business developer Susanne Sahli emphasise the importance of the airport as a locational advantage for the city and the region.
With its high proportion of industry, Grenchen is open and predestined for innovation, and aviation has a deep-rooted tradition here. In 1931, unemployed watchmakers began retraining as aircraft builders. That same year, military pilot Ernst Knab landed the first aeroplane on the newly developed airfield, and 10,000 visitors were able to marvel at the aeronautical displays just a couple of weeks later. The airport has continued expanding since then. With the establishment of LAT (Lufthansa Aviation Training Academy) and the Rega training centre, it has become one of the most important training sites in Switzerland. It is also a magnet for business and recreational aviation and will serve as an expertise centre for the helicopter branch with the Swiss Rotor Hub in the future. With the resident company Smartflyer AG, we also have pioneers in the field of electric aviation. E-mobility and alternative drive systems can fully develop as a new business field, and Grenchen plays a key role in this regard. The airport is open to all branches of aviation and, with over 70,000 flights per year, it is highly dynamic.
Great infrastructure, convenient transport options and quick connections are of great importance for industrial, commercial and service companies. As a technology and production site, Grenchen has always sat above the Swiss average in the secondary sector, and the airport and its development increases the location’s attractiveness across the entire economic area at the south foot of the Jura. The airport is a USP for Grenchen and thus makes the location stand out from similar cities in Switzerland.