Business and community leaders convened in 1989 to create a vision for an airport in the northeast part of Polk County. They saw a need to serve businesses that relied on easy access to Des Moines to complement Des Moines International Airport.
A partnership was crafted between Polk County and the cities of Bondurant, Altoona and Ankeny. The early leadership of the Polk County Aviation Authority and elected officials faced the dual challenges of building and financing an airport from scratch and constructing a system for governing it. These leaders used their relationships and vision to identify a location for the airport and to develop a plan to build it. The airport’s proximity to the Metro North Business Park lent credibility to the vision for a business airport.
The Ankeny Regional Airport opened in February 1994. The first airplane at the airport was a Cessna TR182 owned by Casey’s General Stores (Ankeny Press Citizen, 2/15/94 – 2/21/94).