After serving the region for 15 years, Allegiant Air can now officially call the Lehigh Valley home.

Wednesday it made the airport a permanent base for two planes.

"Today is a culmination of a lot of effort by a lot of people," said Tom Stoudt, executive director of Lehigh-Northampton Airport Authority.

"What that means is that we have two aircraft waiting on the ground to takeoff for morning flights," said Colin Riccobon, director of government and public relations at LNAA.

This means earlier flights for passengers, which kicked off with an early-morning flight to Orlando Wednesday morning.

"(It's) much easier for travel for people," said passenger Joseph Cescon on his way to Orlando.   

It's also bringing in jobs.

"Over 60 flight crew members, aircraft mechanics, you name it, all employees who are actually going to be living in our neighborhoods," said Stoudt.

The airport says this will also make it easier to add other destinations in the future.

"This is direct investment in our community that's making our connection with other areas stronger," said Pennsylvania State Senator Pat Browne.  

"When an airport is vibrant and very successful it's a great thing for the region," said Riccobon.

And there's a chance Allegiant could bring in more planes in the future.

LVIA will add flights to Sarasota, Florida, on Thursday, and in May they're adding more service to Chicago.

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