At the XXII Olympic Winter Games, which open tomorrow and run through February 23, business aircraft passengers and crew visiting the Southern Russian city of Sochi will see the results of massive infrastructure investments–estimated at $50.7 billion–made since 2008.
Airports, Heliports and FBOs
New developments at airports and heliports, including regulations and noise issues; legal disputes; openings, acquisitions and mergers of FBOs; AIN’s Annual FBO Survey Reports; and news, issues and concerns regarding fuel cards, fuel prices and alternative fuels.
In response to an RFP issued last year, the city council of Livermore, Calif., has signed an agreement with Hayward, Calif.-based Five Rivers Aviation to establish a new FBO at the San Francisco airport and take over fueling operations from the municipality. The proposed plan calls initially for a 25,000-sq-ft facility that would include the terminal and hangar space for transient aircraft, as well as for tenant businesses such as aircraft maintenance (which is not currently available). Two subsequent construction phases would each add another 25,000 sq ft of hangar space.
Lufthansa Technik subsidiary Bizjet International is expanding its FBO services at Tulsa International Airport with the refurbishment of one of its hangars into a new terminal. Expected to open this month, the relocated FBO in Hangar 29 on the north side of the airport will have more than 33,000 sq ft of heated aircraft storage space along with a 2,500-sq-ft terminal that will include a passenger lounge, onsite car rental, pilot lounge, kitchen, a large A/V-equipped conference room, snooze rooms, showers and crew courtesy cars.
W Aviation, already operating at Florida’s Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport (FXE) since last fall from the former Execuport facility, expects to break ground this spring on a new FBO. Its current, temporary facility recently underwent a $250,000 refurbishment and is base for 16 turbine aircraft ranging from the first G650 in southern Florida to a King Air 90, as well as the 12-jet fleet of sister charter provider Windsor Jet. The company has acquired an additional seven acres of airport land to combine with its existing three-acre leasehold.
Avjet expects to break ground this month on a new FBO at Seoul Gimpo International Airport. According to the company, plans for the facility call for enough hangar space to accommodate four BBJ-sized aircraft, along with four large-cabin business jets such as the Bombardier Global. The project is a partnership between the California-based aviation services provider and Korea Airport Corp. Avjet Asia was awarded a 10-year contract to manage the facility, which is expected to be completed in October next year.
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency can now process non-U.S. citizen general aviation flight arrivals at New York’s Long Island MacArthur Airport. Arrivals are processed through the agency’s newly renovated facility at the airport’s main terminal between Gates B14 and B15. In operation from 9 a.m. until 11 p.m. seven days a week, the facility can clear a combined maximum of 20 passengers and crew per general aviation flight.
Volo Aviation has been awarded the contract to manage the FBO at MidCoast Regional Airport at Wright Army Airfield, a joint public- and military-use airport located within Fort Stewart, 35 miles from Savannah. In 2007, several local agencies partnered to build a 13,825-sq-ft terminal to house both the military and civilian operations at the airport.
Michigan-based aviation services provider Avflight has taken over the lease of the former Flower Aviation and fueling operation of America Jet, previously the two FBOs at Salina Regional Airport in Kansas. It will operate the two facilities as Avfuel-branded Avflight North and South. The addition marks Avflight’s ninth owned and operated location. The Salina Airport Authority board of directors approved a new 20-year lease for the former Flower Aviation property, with two 10-year renewal options for it and the other properties in the agreement.
Wilson Air Center has begun the second phase of expanding its FBO at Houston Hobby Airport. Phase one consisted of a total renovation of its existing facility, including pilots’ lounges and snooze rooms, a presidential suite and more than 80,000 sq ft of hangar space. The next installment will include the construction of a 25,000-sq-ft hangar, capable of accommodating the G650, along with a new office complex. The project is scheduled for completion in the spring.
The city of McKinney, Texas, has completed changing the name of its airport to McKinney National Airport from Collin County Regional Airport. The rebranding accompanies the city’s $25 million purchase of the lone FBO on the field, formerly operated by Cutter Aviation, from Schuler Development, along with several more hangars and improvements. The Dallas suburb planned the changes as a cornerstone for economic development of the airport as well as a means to erase the annual $600,000 subsidy the city has provided it.