While business aviation traffic in Brazil continues to grow, the infrastructure needed to serve that traffic is slowly evolving as well, in advance of the country’s hosting two of the world’s top sporting events: the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympic Games. But for those used to the North American model of an FBO, there are still some differences at many of Brazil’s airports.
Airports, Heliports and FBOs » FBOs
New developments at FBOs including regulations and noise issues; legal disputes; openings, acquisitions and mergers.
While the name on the side of the refueling truck might say Air BP, BR Aviation or Shell, what’s inside it at any airport in Brazil all comes from the same source. All discussions of aviation fuel in the country must start with Petróleo Brasileiro (Petrobras), the national oil refiner of Brazil and the official supplier of Jet-A and avgas. Petrobras produces approximately 70 percent of the Jet-A used in the country and imports the remainder in its effort to supply the three major distributors.
Sonoma Jet Center at Charles M. Schulz-Sonoma County Airport in Santa Rosa, Calif., has joined Signature Flight Support’s affiliate FBO program, Signature Select. As such, Sonoma Jet Center will offer the benefits of the Signature Flight Support network, including Signature Status and Signature TailWins customer rewards programs. Sonoma Jet Center boasts an “elegant” passenger terminal and a newly constructed 22,000-sq-ft hangar built to house G650-size aircraft, as well as a smaller 12,000-sq-ft hangar.
B. Coleman Aviation is building an FBO at Chicago-Gary International Airport, the company announced today. The facility will feature more than 25,000 sq ft of general aviation terminal and hangar area, in addition to a 12,500-sq-ft airside canopy large enough for Gulfstream and Bombardier ultra-long-range jets. Completion of the FBO complex is slated for the second quarter next year, though B. Coleman Aviation is now providing fuel sales and FBO services from a temporary facility at the field.
Boston Executive Helicopters has broken ground on an FBO at Norwood (Mass.) Memorial Airport. The intended 15,000-sq-ft-hangar/terminal complex was originally scheduled to open this summer, but the company now expects services can begin by year-end. Construction was set back by delays in approvals for the company’s fuel farm installation plan, as well as other issues. Late last month, airport authorities issued a final approval for the continuation of hangar construction and installation of the fuel farm after Boston Executive Helicopters agreed to submit more documents.
The Independent Fixed Base Operators Association (Ifboa) announced last month that it has now surpassed the 500-member-company mark. Founded in 2006, the group includes FBO operators, flight schools, repair stations and aircraft management and sales firms among its ranks.
Henriksen Jet Center at privately owned Houston Executive Airport is now fully operational, with the completion of its 22,500-sq-ft terminal. The FBO began operations in 2006 and has done business from temporary trailers ever since. The facility has the world’s largest arrivals canopy (at more than 32,000 sq ft large enough to shelter a pair of Boeing Business Jets parked side-by-side).
Signature Flight Support has purchased a majority share of Starlink Aviation’s FBO at Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (CYUL). In 2010 Starlink entered into a licensing agreement with Signature that saw the FBO become co-branded and gave it access to Signature’s sales, marketing and customer service programs and proprietary employee training.
In continuing its plan to refresh its FBO locations, Atlantic Aviation completed a $1.5 million total remodel of its Casper, Wyo. site last month. The lone services provider at Casper/Natrona County International Airport, Atlantic’s newly completed facility reflects the airport’s history and the Western heritage; as with the company’s other recent renovations, the remodel makes extensive use of natural materials on the interior. It includes a fireplace, Internet café, A/V-equipped conference room, coffee bar and Wi-Fi availability throughout the facility. The FBO is staffed from 6 a.m.
Airplanes have been landing at what is now Igor I. Sikorsky Memorial Airport (BDR) in Stratford, Conn., since newfangled flying machines were in their infancy. The airport was the site of the first airshow in the U.S. in 1911, and has changed names several times before its current title was adopted in 1972. At one point it was served by several airlines, but that ended in 1999, when the last carrier left.