Air Canada is doing business again with T.F. Green after the airline suspended its service back in 2013.
It's great that there are now flights again to Canada along with new services to Ireland, the Caribbean, and a few more added airlines.. but it all comes back to those "enplanement" numbers.
According to the most recent Moody's downgrade rating on RIAC's investment bonds from 2016, RIAC must show a "Sustained period of enplanement growth in line with regional and national peers" in order to improve its credit rating.
The stable outlook reflects the expectation that RIAC will maintain satisfactory financial metrics, with stable leverage given no plans for additional debt and improved enplanement trends given natural demand in the service area and a lower likelihood of further service cuts given the magnitude of cuts that have occurred to date.
Factors that Could Lead to an Upgrade
Sustained period of enplanement growth in line with regional and national peers
Maintenance of net revenue DSCRs above 1.5 times and liquidity above 600 days unrestricted cash on hand
Accelerated recovery of the service area economy leading to increased air travel demand and RIAC's successful capture of these passengers
Factors that Could Lead to a Downgrade
Renewed downtrend in enplanements
Below-average traffic growth combined with net revenue DSCRs below 1.15 times and liquidity below 400 days for a sustained period."
Enplaned passengers consist of the people who are boarding planes at T.F. Green Airport. As you can see from the top graph (above), the number of enplaned passengers traveling out of T.F. Green over the past 5 years is pretty much, flat. There needs to be at least 417 thousand more passengers traveling out of T.F. Green for the remainder of the year just to match 2016's numbers.
The City of Warwick has sacrificed much, all in the name of economic development. The question is, at what point will it all be worth the return on the investment?