United Express Bombardier CRJ-200ER airplane
Photograph ©2013 by Brian Cohen.

Travel Alert: Columbia Regional Airport Closed For at Least One Week

Safety concerns pertaining specifically to the intersection of the two runways at Columbia Regional Airport in Missouri have resulted in the designated regional carriers for United Airlines and American Airlines to temporarily suspend operations until the problem is corrected, which forced the airport to completely shut down its operations for at least one week starting today, Tuesday, April 9, 2019.

Travel Alert: Columbia Regional Airport Closed For at Least One Week

As no flights will be arriving or departing during the closure of the airport, passengers were forced to adjust their travel plans and seek alternative itineraries. Some of them arrived at the airport within the past few days — only to be surprised and then angered by their flights being canceled.

The crux of the problem is what is described as a “crown” at the intersection of the two runways, which has caused issues and feels like hitting a bump during the times when airplanes — typically smaller airplanes such as regional jets — take off and land at the airport; and that crown will undergo minor changes to have the problem corrected.

According to this article written by Megan Sanchez for KRCG-TV Channel 13 News in Jefferson City, John Glascock — who is the interim city manager of Columbia — said that “the crown is required by the FAA to assist with water draining off of the runway, much like a road is crowned to assist in draining water. The crown is on runway 2-20 where it intersects with runway 13-31. The airport was utilizing the secondary runway (13-31), while the main runway (2-20) is being redone.”

Glascock also admitted that the closure of the airport will affect the city financially.

SkyWest, Mesa Airlines and Envoy Air offer daily service between Columbia Regional Airport and Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, and Denver.

United Airlines has issued a travel alert for Columbia Regional Airport for Tuesday, April 8, 2019 through Monday, April 15, 2019; and Tuesday, April 30, 2019 is the last day on which tickets must be reissued and rebooked travel must begin.

American Airlines has yet to issue a travel alert for Columbia Regional Airport.

No definitive date or time has been given as to when the airport will open once again to air traffic.


Columbia Regional Airport is located 128 miles west of Saint Louis and 139 miles east of Kansas City — both of which are less than two hours and ten minutes away without traffic. If you cannot alter your travel plans and absolutely must be in Columbia, Jefferson City, or any other location within this area of central Missouri, consider traveling to either of those two airports instead and rent a car.

Photograph ©2013 by Brian Cohen.

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