MBS International Airport is located in Freeland, Michigan, serving the nearby cities of Midland, Bay City, and Saginaw. It was formerly named Tri City Airport or Freeland Tri-City Airport. The airport was renamed to MBS International Airport in 1994 (representative of its IATA airport code) to prevent confusion with other airports named “Tri City Airport” across the United States.
The commercial airport is a special municipal body owned by Bay County and the cities of Midland and Saginaw. The airport’s name is an initialism formed from the names of these three communities and it is governed by a nine-member commission made up of three members from each of them
MBS INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT HISTORY
During World War II, it was used to hold prisoners of war. Civilian control of the airport resumed in the mid-1940s.
The 1980s and 1990s saw a lot of growth at MBS. During this time, airline service expanded and many airlines began serving MBS.
During the 1980s, Air Canada operated the Jetstream 31, linking MBS with Toronto, Canada.
American Eagle Airlines operated Shorts 360 turboprop aircraft between MBS and Chicago, Illinois, as well as Lansing, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, and Traverse City. American left MBS in the late 1980s.
Chicago Express Airlines, the now-defunct ATA Airlines carrier, served MBS in the early 1990s with daily service to Chicago Midway Airport using the Jetstream 31 turboprop aircraft.
Comair (Delta Connection) briefly linked MBS with Cincinnati, Ohio, using Embraer EMB 120 Brasilia, a 30-seat turboprop. Comair left MBS and started service in Flint, where they terminated service years later.
Continental Airlines provided mainline service in the 1980s to Cleveland, Ohio. The airline used McDonnell Douglas DC-9 and Boeing 737 aircraft on this route. Mainline service was downgraded to Continental Express service in the late 1980s. Continental Express used Beechcraft 1900 turboprop aircraft. Service to Flint and Chicago Midway also existed in 1992. The airline left MBS in the mid-1990s and returned in 2002. Service was dropped to Cleveland again in 2003.
MBS INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT LOCATION
MBS INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT FACTS
Elevation: 668 ft.
Runway length available: 05/23 8002×150 ft. :: 14/32 6400×150 ft.