Wittman Regional Airport

Wittman Regional Airport (IATA: OSH, ICAO: KOSH, FAA LID: OSH) is a county owned public use airport located two nautical miles (4 km) south of the central business district of Oshkosh, a city in Winnebago County, Wisconsin, United States.[2] A large portion at the south end of the airport is located in the town of Nekimi.[3] It is located adjacent to Pioneer Airport, part of the EAA Aviation Museum. The airport was named after pioneer air racer, aircraft designer and builder Steve Wittman in 1972.[4] Originally named Winnebago County Airport, the name Steve Wittman Field[5] was proposed in 1968 and it is also known as Wittman Field.[citation needed] It is included in the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2019–2023, in which it is categorized as a regional general aviation facility.[6]

Wittman Regional Airport
Wittman Airport Logo.png
Airport terminal, December 2006
Airport typePublic
Owner/OperatorWinnebago County
ServesOshkosh, Wisconsin
Passenger services ceasedMarch 2003 (2003-03)
Elevation AMSL808 ft / 246 m
Coordinates43°59′04″N 088°33′25″W / 43.98444°N 88.55694°W / 43.98444; -88.55694Coordinates: 43°59′04″N 088°33′25″W / 43.98444°N 88.55694°W / 43.98444; -88.55694
FAA Airport Diagram
FAA Airport Diagram
OSH is located in Wisconsin
Location of airport in Wisconsin
OSH is located in the United States
OSH (the United States)
Direction Length Surface
ft m
18/36 8,002 2,439 Concrete
9/27 6,179 1,883 Concrete
5/23 3,697 1,127 Asphalt
13/31 3,061 933 Asphalt
Aircraft operations (2015)64,717
Based aircraft (2019)171
Sources: airport web site[1] and FAA[2]


It has serviced aircraft as large as the Boeing 747, Boeing 767, Airbus A380, Concorde and Boeing B-52 Stratofortress.[7] The airport has been served by commercial airlines in the past. Until 1980, Wittman boarded more passengers than nearby Appleton International Airport, and was the commercial air hub of the Fox Cities.

Historical Air ServiceEdit

Wittman was served at various times by Wisconsin Central Airlines, North Central, Republic, Air Wisconsin, American Central, Midstate Airlines, Northwest Airlink, United Express, Midway Connection, Skyway, and Great Lakes. Service was subsidized by the Essential Air Service program until March 2003,[8][9] when it was terminated due to federal law not allowing a subsidy over $200 per passenger for communities located within 210 miles of the nearest large or medium hub airport (Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport, a medium hub serving Milwaukee).[10]

Facilities and aircraftEdit

Wittman Regional Airport covers an area of 1,392 acres (563 ha) at an elevation of 808 feet (246 m) above mean sea level. It has four runways: 18/36 is 8,002 by 150 feet (2,439 x 46 m); 9/27 is 6,179 by 150 feet (1,883 x 46 m); 5/23 is 3,697 by 75 feet (1,127 x 23 m); 13/31 is 3,061 by 75 feet (933 x 23 m).[2]

For the 12-month period ending December 31, 2015, the airport had 64,717 aircraft operations, an average of 177 per day: 97% general aviation, 2% air taxi and 1% military, though the EAA Airventure airshow accounts for a large number of the annual operations.[11] In July 2019, there were 171 aircraft based at this airport: 129 single-engine, 29 multi-engine, 12 jet and 1 helicopter.[2]

As with many larger airports, Wittman Field's expansion over the years has necessitated the closure of nearby roadways and acquisition of nearby parcels of land. In particular, Knapp Street (running parallel to the runways) has been permanently closed near the airport to facilitate the expansion of the grounds in that area (for the annual EAA Airventure.)

The airport has 3 flight schools; Aviation Services, Discover Flight, and Fox Valley Technical College.

Control TowerEdit

The original tower at Wittman Field opened in 1963. In 2007, a new tower was built that is over twice the height of the old building.[12][13] The original tower was demolished in April 2009.[14]

Cargo operationsEdit

Freight Runners Express Milwaukee, Rhinelander

Freight Runners Express offers scheduled cargo service from the airport.[15] They utilize their Beechcraft Model 99 aircraft type for Oshkosh cargo operations.[16]


The airport is the site of the annual Experimental Aircraft Association's AirVenture Oshkosh, an experimental aircraft and sport aviation airshow. Across Knapp St. to the west lies the campus of the EAA AirVenture Museum. For the week of AirVenture Oshkosh (known locally as "The Airshow" or "The Fly-in"), Wittman Regional is the world's busiest airport by traffic movements.[17]


The airport will be implementing a two-phase project to improve drainage and rebuild Taxiway B. Work is expected to start after AirVenture 2016.[18]



  1. ^ Wittman Regional Airport, official web site
  2. ^ a b c d FAA Airport Master Record for OSH (Form 5010 PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. effective July 18, 2019.
  3. ^ "Town Of Nekimi Boundary Map". Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  4. ^ "The Wittman Airport Story". Wittman Regional Airport. Retrieved June 17, 2012.
  5. ^ "Steve Wittman Field". The Oshkosh Northwestern. November 9, 1968. p. 6. Retrieved March 19, 2017 – via Newspapers.com.  
  6. ^ "NPIAS Report 2019-2023 Appendix A" (PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. October 3, 2018. Retrieved October 12, 2018.
  7. ^ Soffer, Sari (July 17, 2015). "Massive B-52 lands in Oshkosh for first ground appearance at AirVenture". Young Broadcasting of Green Bay, Inc. WBAY. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
  8. ^ "Essential Air Service Communities Eliminated from Subsidy-Eligibility". Office of Aviation Analysis, U.S. Department of Transportation. July 2010. Archived from the original on May 21, 2012. Oshkosh, WI, by Order 2003-2-20, effective March 1, 2003
  9. ^ "Order 2003-2-20". U.S. Department of Transportation. February 25, 2003.
  10. ^ "Order 2002-12-24". U.S. Department of Transportation. December 31, 2002.
  11. ^ "EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2018 Facts and Figures | EAA AirVenture". EAA.
  12. ^ "New Air Traffic Control Tower at Oshkosh's Wittman Regional Airport Begins Operating this Summer". FAA news. July 31, 2008.
  13. ^ Schmitz, Barbara A. (July 27, 2008). "Farewell to 'The (Original) World's Busiest Control Tower'".
  14. ^ "Featured Projects: Wittman Regional Airport, Oshkosh, Wisconsin". OMNNI Associates. Retrieved 2014-07-30.
  15. ^ "Freight Runners Express Route Map". www.freightrunners.com. Retrieved 25 July 2016.
  16. ^ "Freight Runners Express - Fleet". www.freightrunners.com. Retrieved 25 July 2016.
  17. ^ "EAA AirVenture takes flight for the future". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. July 24, 2004. Archived from the original on March 21, 2007.
  18. ^ "New Improvements Underway". Wittman Regional Airport. NextJen Studios. Retrieved 11 November 2015.

Other sourcesEdit

  • Essential Air Service documents (Docket OST-1999-5712) from the U.S. Department of Transportation:
    • Ninety Day Notice (August 17, 1999) of Great Lakes Aviation, Ltd. of intent to terminate unsubsidized air service at Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
    • Order 99-8-11 (August 13, 1999): prohibits Great Lakes Aviation Ltd., d/b/a United Express, from suspending its essential air service at Oshkosh, Wisconsin, at the end of its 90-day notice period, and requires it to maintain air service through September 16, 1999; and requests proposals from interested carriers to provide replacement service at the community, with or without subsidy.
    • Order 99-10-6 (October 6, 1999):setting a final subsidy rate of $460,391 for Great Lakes Aviation, Ltd., d/b/a United Express, for its provision of subsidized essential air service at Oshkosh, Wisconsin, from August 18, 1999, until further Department action.
    • Order 2002-10-26 (October 22, 2002: re-solicits proposals from carriers interested in providing replacement service at Oshkosh, Wisconsin.
    • Order 2002-12-24 (December 31, 2002): tentatively terminating the subsidy eligibility of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, under the Essential Air Service program because the subsidy per passenger exceeds the $200 per passenger statutory ceiling and the community is less than 210 highway miles from the medium hub airport at Milwaukee, also setting past-period subsidy rates retroactive to October 1, 2001, for service provided by Great Lakes Aviation, Ltd.
    • Order 2003-2-20 (February 25, 2003): finalizing its earlier, tentative decision in Order 2002-12-24 to terminate the subsidy eligibility of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, under the essential air service (EAS) program because the subsidy exceeds the $200 per passenger statutory ceiling.

External linksEdit