Rzeszów Jasionka Airport
History of Rzeszów Jasionka Airport.
The beginnings of the Rzeszów Airport date back to 1937 and were closely related to the development of the Central Industrial District. A new aircraft engine factory was established in Rzeszów, which started operating in April 1937. As the factory was established in Rzeszów, in its southern part, it was not possible to locate the airport directly at the plant. A convenient area for the airport was found north of Rzeszów near Jasionka, and more specifically Nowa Wieś. Ground leveling has started. Several barracks were built and the construction of a wooden hangar began.
Unfortunately, we were unable to finish the construction of the airport, because on September 1, 1939, the German army invaded Poland. Initially, the German army was not interested in the airport. He became interested in him when preparations for the raid on the CCCP began. In 1940, the airport infrastructure was expanded. The parking area of airplanes has been enlarged. It was planned to build a paved runway (dimensions 1,200 m x 40 m). But this intention was not realized. Needless to say, Polish prisoners of war were forced to work.
Jasionka airport was used as a staged on the route; Dresden, Wrocław, Kraków, Rzeszów, Lviv. The proximity of the Subcarpathian oil fields meant that the airport was well supplied with aviation fuel.
When in 1944 the eastern front was approaching, the German army left the airport, destroying it completely. What was left was taken over by the Russians in August 1944. The Russians did not rebuild the airport. They only temporarily repaired the landing area. They used the airport for the winter offensive in 1945. Later, the airport was operated sporadically.
Jasionka airport was in Polish hands only in 1949. This year, by the decision of the Civil Aviation Department of the Polish Committee of National Liberation, it was rebuilt and made available for air transport. Due to the proximity of Soviet territory, it was not possible for any Polish combat regiment to be based at this airport. Additionally, due to the poverty of the Podkarpacie region, the airport did not develop dynamically. Only thanks to the aircraft engine factory, relatively frequent communication with Warsaw was maintained.
The management of Jasionka Airport, from 1949, was performed by PLL LOT. Around 1951, a makeshift air station building was put into use.
In 1959, PLL LOT handed over the management of the airport to the enterprise - Air Traffic and Communication Airports Management. The Management Board of Air Traffic and Communication Airports was a new company created from the transformation of one of the LOT Polish Airlines branches. The new owner started modernizing the airport. Built; a new airport station with an air traffic control tower, a pre-station (platform) apron, a hangar, workshop facilities, a fuel store, a boiler room. All these investments were made in a very short time. Jasionka airport was considered a modern domestic airport.
During this period, the airport also acquired new areas. Northwest area from the air station. The new area was perfect for building a new, modern runway. Its construction started a little later.
Expansion of the airport.
Presumably in 1965, a new runway was put into use. It was located at the present site, but its dimensions were smaller (2,000 m x 40 m). Concrete pavement. Two taxiways connected the runway with the apron and the apron in front of the hangar. Currently, only fragments of the old taxiways are left.
Around 1965, the design and construction of new airport facilities located in the northern part of the airport began. A new station, a new parking area for planes, airport fire brigades and a new air traffic control tower were built. The old facility was occupied by Aeroklub Rzeszowski and renovation workshops.
In the second half of the 1960s and in the next decade, thanks to new An-24 turboprop aircraft, our national carrier, LOT Polish Airlines, launched many new communication connections. It was possible to fly from Rzeszów (except Warsaw) to; Gdańsk, Poznań, Koszalin, Wrocław and Szczecin. At the beginning of the 1970s, Jasionka Airport served 100,000 passengers a year.
On April 1, 1974, Rzeszów-Jasionka airport was given the rank of an international airport, and also a backup for Okęcie Airport. It is important that there is a border crossing at the airport. It is true that no permanent foreign connection has been launched, but charter flights have already been carried out.
Jasionka airport now. 2012 year.
Rzeszów-Jasionka Airport (Rzeszów International Airport, IATA code: RZE, ICAO code: EPRZ). Coordinates 50 degrees 06 minutes 35 seconds N, 22 degrees 01 minutes 08 seconds E. Altitude 211.3 m above sea level.
The airport has very favorable climatic conditions. The largest number of flying days in the country. There is also a very favorable terrain here. The approaches on both sides of the DS (RWY) are flat. There are no natural and artificial terrain obstacles. Pilots often call Jasionka Airport "Good weather airport". Importantly, the airport performs operations 24 hours a day, which is no longer possible at Okęcie Airport (operations are performed only during the day).
Written by Karol Placha Hetman