Bizjet operations are on the rise, FBOs are ‘cautiously’ optimistic. For the FBO industry, business last year looked a lot like it did in 2011 as hopes for a significant resurgence in business aviation were pushed back again.
Pittsburgh International Airport
All taxiways at Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD) once identified by a “Z” prefix have been eliminated as the City of Chicago continues toward the May 2, 2013 renaming of Runway 10-28. That runway will become 10L-28R in advance of this fall’s opening of the new Runway 10C-28C. ORD taxiways will now be identified with double letters such as “DD” or “GG.”
A US Airways customer service agent at Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) is being credited with calling attention to a passenger who attempted to impersonate an Air France pilot as he boarded a flight to West Palm Beach on March 20. The passenger had already caused a fuss over not being allowed to ride in first class. Since he was also wearing a pilot shirt and jacket with epaulets he walked into the cockpit of the waiting aircraft and attempted to take the cockpit jumpseat.
Bristol Flying Centre at the UK’s Bristol Airport opened its newly expanded FBO last week. The now 6,500-sq-ft facility has doubled from its previous size to offer two separate lounges for private and charter flights, as well as a separate crew lounge and redesigned passenger reception areas. The southwest England FBO has recently seen a “massive” increase in handling business, resulting in 1,700-percent growth in annual passenger numbers. Starting next month, Bristol Flying Centre will complete its service capability with the acquisition of a dedicated fuel farm.
The FAA has announced a number of taxiway changes at Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD). The changes, which became effective last week, rename taxiways “ZC” as “AA,” “ZD” as “L1,” “ZE” as “BB” and “ZF” as “CC.” Looking ahead, the FAA reminded users that on May 2 Runway 10-28 will be redesignated Runway 10L-28R as the City of Chicago prepares to open the airport’s new south Runway 10R-28L later this year.
The first airplane carrying revenue passengers from Dubai International Airport’s newly opened concourse in Terminal 3 took off Wednesday at 2:30 p.m. local time on its way to London Heathrow Airport. Emirates Airline Flight EK003 officially marked the opening of Concourse A–the world’s first dedicated to Airbus A380 operations.
Privately owned asset management company Black Forest Ventures has purchased the Galaxy Air Services FBO at Lone Star Executive Airport in Conroe, Texas. One of three providers on the Houston-area county-owned airport, Galaxy was created in 2006, and its new owners plan to move it to a larger facility currently under construction on the southeast side of the airport, near the end of Runway 14-32. Black Forest was selected after a formal RFP process to create a new FBO at the airport, and was awarded a 40-year lease on the new 15-acre site.
California’s Long Beach Airport (LGB) plans to hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony on December 5 to unveil the results of its $140 million renovation. Established in 1923 as the first municipal airport in Southern California, the airport (known also as Daugherty Field) has five runways ranging in length from approximately 4,000 feet to 10,000 feet, and sees some 300,000 operations a year.
Sheltair’s newest FBO started operations on Thursday at Albert Whitted Airport in St. Petersburg, Fla. The company is providing full FBO services out of the main terminal facility at the airport, as well as managing more than 80 T-hangars and 27,000 sq ft of hangar space on behalf of the city. The main terminal is located on the northwest side of the airport and is adjacent to the historic Albert Whitted Hangar One, where the first commercial airliner flew from in 1914.
Executive Air, the FBO at Yeager Airport in Charleston, W.Va., has reopened its terminal after completion of a major $750,000 renovation that saw the demolition and reconstruction of the facility’s ground-floor interior. Additions to the 4,000-sq-ft guest services lobby included a new airside vestibule and a new interior design featuring locally quarried stone, glass walls and furniture produced in the region.