Dane County Regional Airport exterior at night

The Dane County Regional Airport had a record number of passengers going to and from Madison, with 1.9 million passengers taking off or arriving here.

Almost two million passengers flew in to or out of the Dane County Regional Airport in Madison in 2017, the most in airport history.

The final count of 1,907,499 passengers was a 3 percent increase over the 2016 passenger count of 1,841,809, officials said.

"This record-breaking number proves that more people are choosing to travel with us," said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. "That means great things for our airport, its guests and our local economy."

Passenger numbers have gone up steadily for the past decade, according to figures from the federal Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

In 2015, 1.69 million passengers used Madison's airport, up from 1.64 million in 2014, 1.62 million in 2013, 1.57 million in 2012 and 1.45 million in 2011.

"Madison customers can enjoy upgraded service to 15 major airline hubs," said Airport Director Bradley Livingston. "Flights to these key hubs mean convenient one-stop service to worldwide destinations from south-central Wisconsin."

Airport traffic was boosted in 2017 with the start of non-stop service to Las Vegas, and the 2018 passenger numbers should be helped with non-stop service to Philadelphia starting this spring and non-stop service to San Francisco starting in June.

The airport now has over 100 daily departures and arrivals, with non-stop service to 15 cities.

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Bill Novak is a general assignment reporter for the Wisconsin State Journal.