Wichita Airport History
Wichita Airport History Display Greteman Group

History of the Airport


Air Capital Terminal 1 (ACT 1), which is now the Kansas Aviation Museum, operated 19 years, from 1935 – 1954. Construction began June 1929 on the administration building of the Wichita Municipal Airport, now THE present day Kansas Aviation Museum. With the crash of the Stock Market and the start of the Great Depression in 1930, it took another five years before the building opened in 1935. 

Read more here: http://kansasaviationmuseum.org/about/history-of-the-building/

Air Capital Terminal 2 (ACT 2) – Wichita Municipal Airport/Wichita Mid-Continent Airport – April 1954 – May 2015. In January 1951, the Air Force established a Base at the Wichita Municipal Airport. Construction soon began on Wichita Mid-Continent Airport. It was determined that approximately 1,921 acres would be needed to accommodate the present and future needs of an airport for Wichita. Mid-Continent Airport opened at its present location on 1,921 acres in southwest Wichita, first to general aviation in 1953, and then to commercial flights in 1954. Cessna and Learjet located plants adjacent to the airfield and furthered our claim as Air Capital of the World by producing more than half of the world’s general aviation twin engine and turbojet aircraft.

  • April 1, 1954, Mayor Walt Keeler cut the ribbon at Gate 2 to officially open the new airport for 42 passengers that just landed on a Braniff flight from Texas.
  • 1961, commercial jet travel came to Mid-Continent, linking our region to the world as never before.
  • 1976 – Two concourses with 10 gates added
  • 1985 – Expansion of Ticketing and two additional gates
  • 1989 – Last Major Renovation & Expansion

This article discusses the construction of the new Wichita Municipal Airport, which became Wichita Mid-Continent Airport in 1974. This article was written by Emory L. Cox, who was the Director on the Board of Park Commissioners in 1954. The article is a reprint of the original which appeared in the October 1954 issue of the Kansas Government Journal in Topeka, Kansas. Download pdf

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