JetBlue Cancels Flight to Florida, Keeps HQ in New York City

JetBlue Cancels Flight to Florida, Keeps HQ in New York City

JetBlue cancels flight to Florida, keeps HQ in New York City

JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes at 27-01 Queens Plaza North (Wikipedia and jetBlue)

After publicly floating the idea of taking flight from Long Island City, JetBlue has decided to stay in New York.

The airline announced that it would not relocate to Florida and would instead expand its flagship terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens. The company will also add jobs at all three regional airports — JFK, LaGuardia and Newark — according to Crain’s.

JetBlue reviewed the landscape before making its decision, even going through a competitive bid process. But the company ultimately decided to stay in the same place it began in 1998.

The company moved into its current headquarters at 27-01 Queens Plaza North in 2012, where the lease on the 200,000-square-foot building is set to expire in 2023. JetBlue is planning on negotiating a new lease and redesigning the office space there.

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer had applied pressure to JetBlue, privately calling the CEO and asking him to keep the company in New York.

Air travel all but stopped during the pandemic, but has shown signs of bouncing back. The company operated at a peak of 929 flights per day last month, more than six times greater than the peak from a year ago.

A number of companies threatened to leave New York during the pandemic in search of greener pastures. The asset management division of Goldman Sachs was one of the most prominent groups to follow through on relocation.

[Crain’s] — Holden Walter-Warner