Eastern Air Lines Returns To Miami

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It's not the same Eastern Air Lines of old, but a new company that acquired the brand in 2009 has moved into office space at Miami International Airport. The new Eastern also said this week it has filed an application with the U.S. Transportation Department to start operations, and will soon start working on Part 121 certification with the FAA. "We are honored to have the opportunity to launch an airline bearing the iconic Eastern Air Lines name," said CEO Edward Wegel. "We have recruited a world-class board of directors and a highly experienced management team to guide and lead this effort." The company is working to assemble a fleet of leased Airbus A319 and A320 aircraft, and is expected to start offering charter services for tour operators by the end of this year.

The new company moved into the same building that was home to the former Eastern Operations Center from 1965 to 1991. "The Eastern Airlines name was synonymous with MIA and the Miami community for more than 70 years," Miami-Dade Aviation Director Emilio González said in a statement. "So it's certainly exciting to see that this local icon is making a comeback." The original Eastern Air Lines operated from 1928 to 1991 as one of the largest U.S. domestic air carriers. Representatives of the new company visited China last year, where they showed interest in the C919 airliner manufactured by the Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China.