Airport History

The first Rochester International Airport was established by the Mayo Foundation in 1928 as a means to fly in their patients coming from different parts of the country, If was first built within a 285-acre location which is what we know now as Southeast Rochester. By 1929, Rochester Airport official became a subsidiary of the Mayo Foundation. Northwest Airlines was the first airline to use the airport and started plying the St. Paul – Rochester route running FordTrimotors.

By 1940, the airport underwent a major facelift, as runways were paved and the airport was expanded through the acquisition of neighboring properties bringing the airport’s total area to 370 acres. During World War II, the airport was used as a training operations facility of the Army Air Corps. The Mayo Foundation turned over the ownership of the airport to the city of Rochester although its management Rochester Airport Company remained to be with the Rochester Airport Company. From 1940 through 1960, other minor carriers such as North Central Airlines, Ozark Airlines, and Braniff Airways besides Northwest used the services and facilities of the airport.

In 1995, new facilities were added as US Custom post came in, thus the former municipal airport was elevated to the status of an international airport which is now known as the Rochester International Airport and a milestone in the airport history.