Southwest Airlines confirmed today it will launch daily nonstop service from Pittsburgh to Houston's William P. Hobby Airport starting April 14.
The airline will operate one flight a day from Pittsburgh International to the Texas city. The flight will leave Pittsburgh at noon and arrive in Houston at 2:10 p.m.
"We're excited to offer the new daily nonstop service between Houston and Pittsburgh, and our departure times allow for great connecting service to/from the east and west coast," Southwest spokeswoman Michelle Agnew wrote in an email.
Allegheny County executive Rich Fitzgerald attributed the new flight to the growth of the Marcellus Shale industry in Pennsylvania and Ohio. Many of the energy companies have headquarters in Texas.
"The demand is there," he said.
Houston will be the eighth full nonstop destination out of Pittsburgh for Southwest, the airport's second largest carrier behind US Airways.
The airline also plans to start a seasonal flight to West Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 14. It will be the first time local travelers have had nonstop service to that city since 2007.
Mark belko: firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-263-1262.