New executive terminal set to open at Paris Le Bourget

 - December 6, 2007, 7:36 AM

Paris Le Bourget Airport is to open a new terminal building next month. The facility will have room for two FBOs and offices available for rent.

Belgium-based aircraft operator and business aviation services company Flying Group has committed to leasing half the terminal. The fast-growing group, which also has operations at Antwerp in Belgium and Cannes-Mandelieu Airport in the south of France, has signed a 10-year lease on the facility.

The airport anticipated striking a deal last month with a second FBO group (thought to be a non-French firm), according to Le Bourget manager Michel De Ronne. Cessna’s European sales operations will occupy part of the office space, and the airport authority expects two or three other companies to fill the remaining offices.

Aéroports de Paris (AdP), the Paris-area airports authority that owns Le Bourget, developed the three-story terminal through a $4.8 million redevelopment of an existing building.

The two FBOs will have their own entrances to the terminal, with a separate third entry for the other tenants. The building, which encompasses more than 34,000 sq ft, offers a fully equipped state-of-the-art conference facility with modern communications systems.

De Ronne told AIN that the main rebuilding work on the terminal is almost finished and that it will open in April, when the new tenants have completed furnishing the interiors of their facilities. “The terminal is ideally situated between the main road and the runway, so passengers will need only a few minutes to get from the airport’s main entrance to the aircraft,” he said.

Le Bourget Improvements
The new terminal is the most recent project in AdP’s long-term plan to improve Le Bourget’s facilities. The airport has also unveiled more user-friendly signposting, with streets named after major European capitals, and improved information panels.
AdP president and managing director Pierre Graff said that Le Bourget–with more than 57,000 movements in 2004–is Europe’s leading business aviation airport. But for a long time, there had been no major investment program to upgrade the site.

“All the major companies use Le Bourget Airport, which should be a shop window for business in Paris,” Graff commented, before pledging that the airport authority plans to make additional improvements at the site.

“Until now, clients have rented space and built as they like, but an updated airport
will offer a complete package, including the site and the buildings, in full consultation with our clients as to their needs. We have plenty of space available that we intend to upgrade and make viable so as to encourage new companies to come here.”

Flying Group Plans
For the time being, Flying Group will make the new terminal its headquarters in Paris. The company has already obtained a 25-year concession from AdP on a 344,000-sq-ft site that previously housed Euralair Airport Services.

Flying Group spokesman Ben Pandavin told AIN that the company is making further investments on the site. It will demolish the current buildings in the spring and replace them with a new building early next year, when the location will become Flying Group’s headquarters with offices and hangar facilities.

With its 10-year concession with AdP secure, Flying Group is negotiating to extend the lease by two years. At least one of the company’s Cessna Citation Excels will be based with its Le Bourget operation.

Founded in 1991 as Flying Partners with a Cessna Conquest 1, the Flying Group now boasts a fleet of 14 business jets.

Last year, it added a Citation X, a Citation Excel, a Bombardier Challenger 604, a Dassault Falcon 900EX EASy and a Citation Bravo. Seven more jets are on order–a Falcon 900DX EASy due to be delivered next month, two Citation CJ3s and a Falcon 7X due next year and three Citation Mustangs due this year and next.