In 1942 Contra Costa County, California, bought land for $88,000 for an airport in Central County. The County was developing the airport until the site was expropriated by the United States Army Air Forces Fourth Air Force. The Army added land and developed airport facilities, and the Concord Army Air B training base for pilots
The War Assets Administration (WAA) handed the airport back to the county in 1946. The transfer was formalized in 1947, and the airport was named after County Supervisor William J. Buchanan, who served more than forty years on the County Board of Supervisors. The airport continued to be used on occasion by the U.S. Army to transport troops, especially during the Korean War.
George Lucas used Buchanan Field Airport as one of the last exterior scenes in the American Graffiti movie in 1972. In the scene, before Curt leaves for college on the Douglas DC-7C in the background, Steven Bolander (Ron Howard) says good bye to friend Curt Henderson (Richard Dreyfuss).
In 1977, with 357,000 cumulative operations, Buchanan Field reached its height of activity; by this measure, Buchanan Field became the nation's 16th busiest airport, ahead of San Francisco International Airport, John F. Kennedy International Airport and LaGuardia Airport. Noise became a concern during this time and in 1988 the county board of supervisors instituted a county noise restriction order restricting certain aircraft from operating at Buchanan Field.
The Board of Supervisors updated the Master Plan for Buchanan Field Airport beginning in the 1990s. In 1992 commercial development was allowed for adjacent property such as Sam's Club, Taco Bell, Sports Authority, and Jiffy Lube. In the eastern part of the county the County created a new Byron airport. On August 14, 2018, the Board of Supervisors (Board) of Contra Costa County passed a resolution declaring the economic importance of these airports by acknowledging that they are essential economic engines that help Contra Costa County to meet its current and future community transportation and economic needs. The Board further instructed staff to proactively explore creativity and competitive opportunities to improve the airports' economic development potential, as they are the county's capital assets and an integrated transport asset to the Bay Area.
This amazing landmark in Concord, California is located near some other must-see places of interest:
- Naval Weapons Station
- Baldwin Community Park
- Concord Pavilion
- Concord Skatepark
- Dave Brubeck Park
- Lime Ridge Open Space
- Markham Regional Arboretum
- Newhall Community Park
All of these wonderful landmarks are located just a short distance from our location at 1261 Locust Street in Walnut Creek California! Stop by for a visit anytime!