Airport Consulting Weekly
Apr. 4, 2013

Airports suing FAA over planned control tower shutdowns
Fox News
Airport operators are mounting a legal challenge to the Federal Aviation Administration's decision to cut funding for 149 air traffic control towers, accusing the agency of violating federal law meant to ensure major changes at airports do not erode safety.More

FAA should shut most air-traffic radar rooms, study says
Bloomberg
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration could save $1.7 billion up front and about $1 billion more annually by closing 187 air-traffic radar rooms and building consolidated centers to control flights over large regions, a study found. More

Consolidated spending bill trims TSA budget in 2013
Homeland Security Today
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) received a budget cut in the consolidated spending bill for fiscal year 2013 recently signed by President Barack Obama, but it may be able to avoid planned furloughs of airport screeners as lawmakers attempted to minimize the affect of automatic budget cuts on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). More

Airport perimeters vulnerable, says former DOT secretary
Aviation International News
Airport perimeters are the weak links in the nation's aviation security efforts, warns former Transportation Secretary Norm Mineta, now a vice chairman with Hill & Knowlton Strategies. The ease with which anyone can penetrate an airport perimeter may shock those familiar with today’s elaborate security inside terminals, Mineta wrote recently in an op-ed article for The Washington Post.More

TSA to purchase credential authentication technology in 2014
Homeland Security Today
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) plans to procure new credential authentication technology (CAT) in fiscal year 2014 in a major procurement. To prepare for that acquisition, TSA sought information from industry as to capabilities to support a system that could verify identity documents, such as driver's licenses or boarding passes, being carried by an air passenger through various airport checkpoints.More

TxDOT to fund control towers slated for closure at 13 small airports
The Houston Chronicle
In response to the federal government's plan to close control towers at 13 small Texas airports, the Texas Department of Transportation announced it will pick up the slack. The department said it intends to fund continued service of air traffic controllers at the 13 towers when federal funding stops due to nationwide budget cuts.More

Sequestration: Cuts' slow rollout yields no-quester for travelers
Politico
More than a month after Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood warned of "calamity" in the skies, travelers are still flying. Airlines aren't yet canceling flights. And there's no sign of the long lines the Obama administration warned everyone to expect when automatic spending cuts hit March 1.More

It's official: furloughs at Customs and Border Protection postponed
GovExec
Customs and Border Protection is postponing all furloughs and is not eliminating overtime for now, an agency spokeswoman told Government Executive. While CBP had originally planned to furlough all 60,000 members of its workforce due to across-the-board spending cuts from sequestration, the agency gained flexibility from the stopgap spending bill President Barack Obama signed.More

Airports get creative to combat threat of bird strikes
USA Today
A Delta Air Lines flight with 130 passengers headed from Charlotte, N.C., to Detroit jammed on its brakes to abort a takeoff last month after a suspected collision with a bird. The next day, March 8, a Spirit Airlines flight with 109 passengers headed from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to Dallas circled back to land after takeoff because it struck a bird.More

Passenger flights set at new Dubai airport
The Associated Press via The Huffington Post
Dubai aviation officials say scheduled passenger flights will begin in October from a new airport built with the goal of becoming the world's busiest.More

Melbourne Airport ready to be Australia's gateway for huge Chinese market
Xinhua
The continuous influx of tourists and goods from China during the last couple of years has prompted Australian authorities to develop its aviation industry and transport infrastructure to meet the booming demand. In a recent interview with Xinhua, Chris Woodruff, chief executive officer of Melbourne Airport, said they are getting ready to make the city's main airport to be the Australian gateway for the fast-growing and huge Chinese market.More

Last-minute delay for Qatar's new airport
CNN
The opening of Qatar's new Hamad International Airport has been hit by another delay. The airport was due to soft open on April 1 with the arrival of a Qatar Airways plane, local media reported. But that flight was canceled at the last minute, reportedly due to the airport's failure to meet safety and security standards, according to gulfnews.com.More

Earthquake-proofing Nepal's at-risk airport
IRIN Asia
If an earthquake the magnitude of Haiti's 2010 quake were to strike Nepal's capital area, the country's only international airport would be crippled, with no backup plan for receiving essential relief. But now, in response to long-standing predictions of such a catastrophe, the government has endorsed an earthquake preparedness plan for Tribhuvan International Airport; the plan is set to become public in one month.More

Join the discussion on project delivery and construction issues in Fort Worth, Texas
ACC
The eighth annual ACC/ACI-NA/AGC Airport Project Delivery Summit will be held in Fort Worth, Texas from June 12-13, 2013. This unique, peer-to-peer, owner-oriented event facilitates airport owner discussion on the most pressing project delivery and construction issues and helps owners learn from each other's experience. Panels feature airport owners, contractors and consultants who share lessons learned thorough a moderated panel discussion and vibrant Q&A dialog. A tour of the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport will kick off the program the morning of June 12th.More

ACC Members: Nominate Exceptional Agency Individuals for the ACC Agency Best Practices Award
ACC
The Airport Consultants Council is pleased to be soliciting nominations for the 2013 ACC Agency Best Practices Award. Please help to identify worthy individual(s) with the FAA or TSA who exemplify teamwork; are innovative and flexible; and go above and beyond to cooperate with stakeholders.
 
Your firm may submit more than one nomination. To strengthen your nominee's chances of being selected, include the support of multiple ACC member firms in your nomination submittal. Please DO NOT notify the nominee of your intent to or that you have submitted their names for this award. Nominations will be reviewed and award recipients will be selected by the ACC Agency Best Practices Selection Committee that includes Technical Committee Chairs.  
 
Awards will be presented on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 during the ACC Summer Workshop Series Awards Luncheon. Please direct questions to ACC's Manager of Marketing & Services, Colleen Flood, via email at colleenf@acconline.org or via phone at (703) 683-5900. All nominations should be sent to the same email address by Friday, April 19, 2013 following the guidelines above. We look forward to hearing from you and celebrating these exceptional individuals!
More

4 tiny things making a huge difference at London's smallest airport
Jaunted
How many of London's airports can you name? There's Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, uhhh Luton and ... City! It's that last one that's often forgotten because it's the smallest of the bunch and nearest to downtown, though the most innovative (and not just because they offer free WiFi).More

Airport Authority of India to develop 20 airports in next five years
The Financial Express
Airport Authority of India (AAI) is considering developing 20 airports in the next five years, according to a senior official.More

FAA makes tower closing decision
FAA
The Department of Transportation's Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reached the decision that 149 federal contract towers will close beginning April 7 as part of the agency’s sequestration implementation plan.More

Deadline for Notification of Intent To Use the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) Primary, Cargo, and Nonprimary Entitlement Funds for Fiscal Year 2013
FAA via GPO
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announces May 1, 2013, as the deadline for each airport sponsor to notify the FAA whether or not it will use its fiscal year 2013 entitlement funds available under Section 47105(f) of Title 49, United States Code, to accomplish Airport Improvement Program (AIP)-eligible projects that the sponsor previously identified through the Airports Capital Improvement Plan (ACIP) process during the preceding year. More

Contract tower closure information
FAA
The foremost mission of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is transporting the many thousands of passengers safely throughout the United States and around the world. Airports operate safely throughout the United States with and without towers. On April 7, 2013, the FAA will begin to cease funding for 149 contract control towers in three phases that did not meet the national interest screening criteria.More

TSA makes statement on sequestration
TSA
On March 27, The Transportation Security Administration made a statement on how they will respond to the sequestration that recently went in to effect.More