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Virgin America To Get Dallas Love Field Gates

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - The battle for two gates at Dallas Love Field will come to an end on Friday. A source for CBS 11 News has stated that Dallas city manager A.C. Gonzalez is in the process of approving Virgin America for the gates. But there has been no official announcement quite yet.

American Airlines is being required to give up the two gates as part of its deal in the merger with US Airways.

Virgin America is one of three airlines that really wanted the two available gates.

Southwest Airlines -- which is based in Dallas -- and Delta Air Lines had also pushed hard for the Dallas Love Field gates. And a consultant hired by the city recommended that Southwest Airlines win the gate battle, stating that it was best for the city. But Virgin America had a very powerful ally in the U.S. Department of Justice.

The government told the city that Virgin America is the only airline allowed to use the gates because it would boost competition and create lower airfares at Dallas Love Field. Southwest Airlines will still have 16 of the 20 gates at Dallas Love Field.

"I just want to wait and hear officially from the city what their decision is," stated Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly early Friday. "We stand by our feeling that what is best for the City of Dallas is what the city should do, and the consultant's report said that that's Southwest Airlines."

After the flight restrictions known as the Wright Amendment end in October, airlines will be able to offer nonstop flights to anywhere in the U.S. Southwest Airlines and Virgin America both want to fly to the east and west coasts, and Chicago. Virgin America even began offereing tickets for flights out of Dallas Love Field.

Virgin America already flies out of DFW International Airport, but will move its flights to Dallas Love Field in late October.

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