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Wait, what? Stockton airport could add ‘San Francisco’ to its name

San Joaquin County leaders are considering a proposal to change the name of Stockton Metropolitan Airport and include “San Francisco” in the new name.

The county-owned airport would be renamed “San Francisco Stockton Regional Airport”. An advisory committee suggests it will help attract business, increase awareness of the airport’s location and make a connection with the Bay Area for marketing purposes.

A county aviation advisory committee decided at a Sept. 26 meeting to recommend the name change. San Joaquin County’s board of supervisors will consider the proposal Tuesday.

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Supporters point out that Stockton is part of a Census Bureau statistical area encompassing the San Jose-San Francisco-Oakland region. Marketing consultants told the advisory committee it’s common for airports to incorporate a big city name to help with promotions.

“A lot of airports have changed their name to tie in a major destination,” said Stockton Airport Director Harry Mavrogenes. “When we go out to meet with airlines for new service, the question is: where is Stockton? Is it near Bakersfield. Is it up north?”

Stockton will remain in the title as a matter of civic pride and to reflect the airport’s history.

Mavrogenes said that Baltimore-Washington International Airport added a major destination to its title. Bob Hope Airport in Southern California was rebranded as Hollywood Burbank Airport.

Allegiant Air, a low-cost airline, serves the Stockton airport with non-stop flights to Las Vegas, Phoenix and San Diego.

The Central Valley airport has tried to expand into more traditional passenger air service, and is shooting for flights to and from Los Angeles International Airport.

Ken Carlson: 209-578-2321, @KenCarlson16

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