Oct. 9, 2023

A seemingly endless wait for hangar space led to a partnership between a father/son team and the city of Albuquerque, NM, which will bring the first new commercial development to Double Eagle II Airport (AEG) in more than 25 years.

Jack Hinkes said the project began in late 2019 when he and a friend sought flying lessons from his father, Kenny, a longtime professional pilot and CFII. After finding a plane to train in and flying it home, Jack called the local FBO about storing the red Cessna 172.

“I asked the woman who answered, ‘Hey, can I get one of those T-hangars?’” he recalled. “And she laughed at me.”

As with many general aviation airports, AEG’s existing 158 T-hangars were fully occupied with a years-long waiting list for new tenants. However, Hinkes and his father are also local real estate developers and they saw an opportunity.

After identifying a suitable 25-acre parcel south of AEG’s control tower, the duo founded High Flying Hangars and set to work. Over the next three years, they engaged with city and airport officials, local title companies and others to bring the project to fruition.

Those efforts culminated in a recent groundbreaking on the first 10 hangars, which are already sold out. Phase two will add 14 more hangars, with further expansion up to 46 hangars as demand warrants.

City leaders also recognized the importance of supporting general aviation and business aviation pilots and operators at AEG. “There’s a strong multiplier effect from private aviation,” said Mayor Tim Keller at the groundbreaking ceremony. “We know that and that’s also why we want to grow it.”

Manny Manriquez, innovation and commercial development manager for AEG and the Albuquerque International Sunport, said the project complements other city efforts to spur economic growth on Albuquerque’s west side, which he termed “the final frontier for development in our city.

“This provides our aviation and regional business communities with critical facilities for the protection of their investment in their aircraft,” he added.