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NEWS: Columbus Airport’s record year and flight gains

This story was retrieved from:

“COLUMBUS, Ohio — More flights and record numbers of passengers — if these are the measures of success for an airport CEO, Joe Nardone is wrapping up a stellar first year as head of the Columbus Regional Airport Authority.

John Glenn Columbus International Airport was poised in 2018 to hit 8 million passengers in a year for the first time. That tops 2007, when short-lived Columbus startup Skybus Airlines helped the airport reach 7.7 million passengers, and last year’s second-highest tally of 7.5 million.

In 2019, three sought-after new routes from three major airlines — including one airline new to Columbus, Alaska Airlines — are to launch.

Meanwhile, Rickenbacker Airport enjoyed by far its biggest year in terms of both passengers — thanks to the growing operations of Allegiant Air — and cargo shipments.

Still, Nardone, who came to Columbus from much-larger Detroit Metropolitan Airport, isn’t satisfied.

‘We’re just starting. This is just the beginning,’ Nardone said in a recent interview.

Nardone is especially focused on two things this year: continuing to improve the airport’s bottom line, and getting the larger community on board with increasing air service, especially long-sought international flights.

Both goals might require tough choices. The airport authority recently eliminated 22 jobs — half of them full-time, half part-time. Airport spokeswoman Angie Tabor said seven people were laid off in the process while other positions were reduced through restructuring or not filling vacant positions. Tabor added that, in deciding which positions to keep, the authority placed priority on “front-line positions that contribute directly to our operations and customer experience.”

Keeping costs down is especially important for the airport now for several reasons. The airport authority has long discussed building a new terminal but hasn’t figured out how to pay the likely cost of more than $2 billion. In addition to escalating construction costs, the failure of airports to get an increase in passenger-facility charges (per-ticket fees that airports use to fund capital projects) in the recently passed Federal Aviation Administration bill was a blow.

Carriers have also become increasingly willing to abandon routes that aren’t performing well in favor of more-profitable ones.

This year, Southwest Airlines cut a nonstop flight from Columbus to Oakland, California, that was highly sought after by local government and development officials as a link to Silicon Valley. Nardone said he has gotten an earful from people in the community unhappy about the route cut. Although Nardone, too, dislikes losing a flight, he said it’s up to the community to step up and support air service.

‘People say ‘I was on that flight all the time,’ Nardone said. ‘And I say, ‘Well, not enough people like you were on it.’ Airlines make decisions in their best interest, and airports are there to serve airlines.’

Nardone said 2018 saw the culmination of years of work by the airport authority’s air-service development efforts. In quick succession, flights were announced to Seattle and San Francisco, two long-sought West Coast routes, along with the Western hub of Salt Lake City. John Glenn Airport also welcomed ultra-low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines and announced plans for the arrival in March of Alaska Airlines.

The one big goal that has remained elusive is an international flight to a European gateway such as London, Paris or Amsterdam, catering to business travelers. While declining to get specific, Nardone strongly hints that such a flight could have been secured for Columbus had the community been able to come up with several million dollars to provide a fund commonly referred to as a revenue guarantee to an airline for the first two years of service. This setup is designed to protect the airline as it devotes resources to establishing and marketing a flight that’s likely to take months to become profitable.

FAA rules prevent airports themselves from giving money to airlines this way, although they can provide non-cash incentives such as the waiving of landing fees. It typically falls to state or local governments or to business-development organizations to put up the money. The Oakland flight on Southwest was guaranteed by a combined $1.7 million pledged by the city of Columbus and Franklin County (Rose, 2018).”

To view the the original article, please visit the source or click here for a direct link

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NEWS: FWA brought servicemen ‘Home for the Holidays’

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“FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Three United States servicemen will spend the holidays with their families, thanks to the Fort Wayne-Allen County Airport Authority (FWACAA), WANE 15, and an anonymous donor.

FWACAA and WANE 15 asked local military families to submit a short essay highlighting why their serviceman or woman deserved to be brought home for the holidays.

Two members of the military were initially selected from the entries – Gage Phillips and Daniel Hockenberry.

Phillips is currently serving in the United States Marine Corps and is stationed in Honolulu, Hawaii. Because of plane ticket prices, Phillips hasn’t been able to come home for quite some time.

His grandfather, a Marine Corps Vietnam veteran himself, is currently on dialysis and needs a kidney transplant. He is extremely excited to see Phillips again.

Phillips will arrive at Fort Wayne International Airport on Saturday.

Hockenberry has served in the United States Air Force for more than 20 years. He just finished a deployment in Japan and hasn’t been able to come home in four years.

Hockenberry will land in Fort Wayne on Wednesday, December 26 to ring in the New Year with his mother, who entered him into the contest.

In a special change of plans, a third service member was also added to the list.

After seeing WANE 15 and FWACAA promote the ‘Home for the Holidays’ contest, a viewer decided he wanted to get involved. The anonymous resident donated enough money to bring home an additional serviceman who will fly in ahead of Christmas.

That man is Spencer Myers. Myers is serving in the United States Army and is flying home Thursday morning.

Myers recently proposed to his girlfriend, who is pregnant with their first child together. While he’s in the area, the two of them plan on getting married in a small ceremony.

Myers will then be deployed in January, but he’s not sure where he will be sent, or for how long. That’s one more reason he and his family plan on making the most of his visit.

‘I would like to thank [the donor] for your generosity, to care about my young soldier and all
soldiers who give all they have to protect each and every one of us,” said Kathy Cooper,
grandmother of Spencer Myers. “[My grandson] is able to come home and will be marrying the
love of his life while he is home for Christmas. Saying thank you seems like so little, but it truly
comes from my heart'” (Kuhn, 2018).

To view the news video or the original article, please visit the source or click here for a direct link.

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NEWS: KCI Terminal Renovation

This story was retrieved from:

“KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Developers unveiled a model Thursday of what the new terminal at KCI Airport will look like.

Convenience is being incorporated into the new design.

The aviation committee asked questions about design features being used into the new terminal, as the developer, Edgemoor, says it expects to begin construction next year.

The terminal includes two levels, one for arrivals and the other for departures, as is common at many other major airports around the nation.

But convenience remains a primary focus. The architect tells FOX 4 it will only be 120-feet from drop off at the curb to the security checkpoint.

In addition, a parking garage across the roadway, which many travelers like at the current KCI, will also be a part of the new terminal.

‘It’s an extremely complicated building,’ said Jordan Pierce, architect of the terminal. ‘Most complicated building type there is in the world. Coming up with a solution that maintains that convenience has been difficult, but it’s something we’ve embraced as a challenge.’

The security checkpoint will include what’s called ‘high throughput’ security devices so four passengers can be screened at one time. Automatic tray return also promises to speed up the process.

Still to be resolved is a dispute among the airlines to pay for a baggage handling system at the new terminal.

The city’s aviation department says it’s meeting with the airlines again Monday, but may have to impose a compromise solution that it hopes will be accepted by all the carriers currently serving Kansas City” (Pepitone, 2018).

To view a video of the new terminal visit the source or click here for a direct link.

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Congratulations to This Year’s Award Winners!

Congratulations to this year’s award winners from the 2018 GLC-AAAE Annual Conference!


GLC-AAAE Commercial Airport Project of the Year
Architectural Project

Gerald R. Ford International Airport
Gateway Transformation – Phase 1


GLC-AAAE Commercial Airport Project of the Year
Airfield Project

Cherry Capital Airport
Runway 10 Extension Program


GLC-AAAE General Aviation Airport Project of the Year
Architectural Project

Indianapolis Executive Airport
Beck’s Hybrids Corporate Hangar


GLC-AAAE General Aviation Airport Project of the Year
Airfield Project

Porter County Regional Airport
Runway 9-27 Rehabilitation


To see more information about any of these projects, click here to download a slideshow presentation.

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Position Announcements: OAK and BTR

The Baton Rouge Airport Authority is seeking a Director of Aviation for the Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport (BTR). For more information about the position and how to apply, click here.

The Port of Oakland is seeking an Airport Operations Manager: Ground Transportation & Parking Services.

For more information about the position and how to apply, click here.


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Position Announcements: Massachusetts Port Authority and Port of Seattle

The Massachusetts Port Authority is seeking a Director of Airline Route Development to attract new and expanded international and domestic passenger and cargo flights to Logan International Airport (BOS) and other Massport owned or operated airports, while maintaining existing services. Find more information about the position here.

The Port of Seattle is seeking a Terminal Planner for the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA). The Terminal Planner will develop and analyze alternatives to provide operational solutions and capital project recommendations to accommodate growing airport activity with a high level of customer service. Find more information about the position here.


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Position Announcement: Paradies Lagardere

Paradies Lagardère is seeking a Vice President, Business Development who will report to and work closely with the Executive Vice President and will be based in Atlanta, Georgia.

See more information on the position and how to apply here.

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Position Announcements: CAE, BNA, RDU

The following airports are seeking candidates for open positions:

The Richland-Lexington Airport Authority is seeking an Executive Director for the Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE).

The Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority (MNAA) is seeking an Assistant Vice President, Human Resources.

The Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority is seeking a Senior Vice President, Chief Revenue Officer.


Please follow the above links for more information about each position opportunity.


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