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Southwest Could Be Eying Midway-LaGuardia Flights

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Southwest Airlines Co. is trying to crack the New York market, the crown jewel of business travel, by making a bid to buy bankrupt ATA Airlines' slots at LaGuardia Airport.

Southwest says it made a bid $7.5 million to acquire ATA's 14 slots at LaGuardia in bankruptcy court in Indianapolis, which is auctioning off ATA's assets. ATA filed for bankruptcy protection in April.

Currently, Southwest only offers service to Islip, N.Y., on Long Island, which isn't as convenient to Manhattan, the heart of New York's business center.

Southwest didn't specify whether it would seek to start service from Midway to LaGuardia. But if that happens, it would present a big threat to United Airlines and American Airlines, which dominate business service between Chicago and New York City.

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