Airport Consulting Weekly
Sep. 26, 2013

Airbus: China will trump US with flight demand
The amount of passengers taking domestic flights in China in twenty years' time will dwarf that in the United States, leading aircraft manufacturer Airbus said. "It's a big story," John Leahy, chief operating officer at the customers department for Airbus told CNBC. Twenty nine percent of all the revenue passenger kilometers are going to be coming out of Asia-Pacific, he added, with China growing rapidly.More

Could new scanner allow TSA to ease bottled water rule?
Washington Business Journal
A new machine may allow the public to safely bring bottled water through airport security checkpoints in the future. The Transportation Security Administration has just given a $6.8 million contract to Edgewood, Md.-based Smiths Detection for scanners that can detect hazardous liquids in sealed bottles.More

Improved budgeting could help FAA better determine future operations and maintenance priorities
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has made some progress in addressing key challenges as it begins the gradual transition to the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). It has filled key leadership positions and developed tools to manage interdependent NextGen programs. FAA is working to address other identified challenges, including incentivizing aircraft operators to equip with NextGen technologies, identifying workforce roles under NextGen, and realigning and consolidating facilities. However, FAA has yet to make some decisions needed to move forward with these efforts.More

Airport retail: Options, styles expanding rapidly
By Archita Datta Majumdar
The latest airport retail trends show two distinct expansion characteristics — lateral and vertical. The former is natural, but it is the advent and addition of the latter that gives more depth to the trend and has made a complete 180-degree change in the airport retail scene. Gone are the days when airports would sport a few small shops selling coffee, magazines and smokes, maybe with a small, not-so-fancy restaurant. Thankfully, those bland days of travel are over.More

O'Hare gets $10 million for taxiway to help new runway
The Chicago Tribune via
O'Hare International Airport is receiving a $10 million federal grant for airfield construction that will allow for more flights, with Illinois congressmen hopeful the money also will jump-start stalled negotiations between Chicago and the airlines over completing the runway expansion project.More

Signs of our times: Airport ads are big business
It's an airport, not a seaport. Still, there's a 22.5-foot Grady-White recreation boat just inside passenger terminal Door 2 at Southwest Florida International. A Porsche Cayman sports car is parked inside near door Door 5. Local dealers put these grown-ups' toys in the airport terminal, and they're loving the response.More

Chicago O'Hare International Airport to sell $899.1 million revenue bonds
Chicago O'Hare International Airport is planning to sell $899.1 million of general airport senior lien revenue bonds on Oct. 2, a market source said. Proceeds from the deal will be used to refund outstanding airport debt and finance projects for the airport's ongoing modernization and capital improvement programs, according to the preliminary official statement.More

American, US Airways agree to extend merger deadline
American Airlines and US Airways agreed to extend their merger deadline as they fight a lawsuit from the U.S. Department of Justice trying to block their union. The agreement between AMR Corporation, the parent company of American, and US Airways moves the date at which either one can terminate the merger agreement from Dec. 17 to Jan. 18.More

DFW airport reports fewer bird strikes, ranks No. 2 in US
An NBC 5 investigation finds Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport reports more cases of airplanes hitting wildlife than almost any other airport in the country. DFW reported 323 wildlife strikes last year — nearly one incident per day. Only Denver International Airport reported more in 2012.More

LAX presents new iconic architecture as flight operation begins in new concourse
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti was joined by former mayors and elected officials; airport officials and representatives of airlines; and other airport tenants to commemorate the start of flight operations in the South Concourse of the New Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). The start of operations marks completion of Phase I of the overall $1.9-billion New TBIT Project.More

Airport slims budget, boosts airline incentives
Arizona Daily Star
The Tucson Airport Authority has adopted a smaller budget for the coming fiscal year as it focuses on controlling costs in the face of continued erosion of flights at smaller airports. Among other items, a proposed merger of bankrupt American Airlines and Tempe-based US Airways — on hold now amid a U.S. Justice Department antitrust lawsuit — will cost Tucson International Airport an estimated $688,000 in lost space rental fees if the carriers merge operations.More

Atlantic City, NJ, airport floor plan to be available on Google Maps
Press of Atlantic City
Have you ever had the urge to find your gate before you leave for the airport? It won't be long before Google Maps will allow users to zoom in on the Atlantic City International Airport for a view of its floor plan, letting the public navigate through the airport electronically.More

Airports for art lovers
The Wall Street Journal
If you want to see some of the best contemporary art in U.S. cities these days, buy an airline ticket. Airports have been spending heavily on public art over the past 10 years, thanks to a heavy focus on turning what historically have been nondescript atriums of stress into interesting rest stops catering to upscale clientele.More

Biometric ID viable at US entry points: Report
The Washington Times
Federal law has long called for all visitors to the U.S. to submit to biometric identification both coming and going, but the government has never lived up to that promise — and senators in their immigration bill this year even announced a retreat, weakening the law, saying the requirement is too expensive.More

Sequester and budget stalemate worry backers of air traffic modernization
Government Executive
Transportation Department leaders are gearing up for a long-predicted autumn budget battle that poses a threat to NextGen, the decade-old $40 billion-and-rising program for modernizing air traffic control technology systems.More

Airlines make profits, but at a slower place
The world's airlines are continuing to make profits but at a slower pace than previously expected, a report out today says. The International Air Transport Association says airlines will make $11.7 billion in profits in 2013, down from the previously projected $12.7 billion.More

Virgin-Delta transatlantic JV approved by US transport body
British airline Virgin Atlantic and U.S. carrier Delta Air Lines said their joint venture on routes between North America and Britain had been approved by the U.S. Department of Transportation.More

Ryanair admits it may have an image problem
The Associated Press via USA TODAY
European airline Ryanair may finally understand what its customers have been saying all along: They like the discounted ticket fares, but hate the customer service.More

BA slams 'greedy' Heathrow Airport aims to increase levy by extra £4 per passenger
Belfast Telegraph
Heathrow Airport's biggest customer has leveled damning criticism of management at the London hub which it accuses of needlessly ramping up the cost of flights through the airport.More

Frankfurt Airport celebrates Oktoberfest
Frankfurt Airport is now celebrating Oktoberfest until Oct. 6 at Terminal 1's concourse "Z." Decked out in the style of this popular annual festival, concourse "Z" will feature brass-band music, traditional Bavarian costumes, and schuhplattler-style folk dancing to create the atmosphere of the Oktoberfest beer tents.More

Singapore Airlines takes delivery of luxurious new 777
Singapore Airlines is often lauded as one of the world's most luxurious airlines. But the Asian carrier is not resting on its laurels. The airline is set to begin flying what it says will be its most luxurious plane yet, taking delivery of its first Boeing 777-300ER to feature the carrier's all-new cabin interior at Boeing's production line north of Seattle.More

ACC committees briefed on Advisory Circular updates, potential government shutdown
Officials from the FAA Office of Airports briefed ACC committee members on the status of over 20 Advisory Circulars (ACs) that are either currently undergoing revisions or will be addressed in FY 2014. Danielle Rinsler, Assistant Manager of the Office of Planning & Environment, briefed members of the ACC Planning and Environmental Committees, while John Dermody, Manager of the Office of Airport Engineering, provided an update to the ACC Engineering Committee. ACC Executive Vice President T.J. Schulz also provided committees an update on the status of a potential shut down of the federal government and implications from cuts to FAA programs due to sequestration. For more information, please contact T.J. at

ACC Institute: FAA Office of Airports (ARP) Field SOPs Webinars
Airport sponsors will receive more consistent delivery of services in FY 2014 through the use of new FAA Office of Airports (ARP) Field Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). Before FY 2014, each of the 29 ADOs and Regional offices implemented FAA programs in different ways, including multiple checklists for the same requirements. Through collaboration with the FAA workforce, ARP identified 23 high-value activities that are in need of standardization. This two-part webinar will provide information on standard review processes for two of the pilot SOPs: airport layout plans and safety/phasing for airfield construction projects. Register now for these two hour-long webinar sessions describing specific SOP applications.

SESSION 1: During the first session, FAA presenters will overview the uniform procedures for reviewing and approving Airport Layout Plans (ALPs). ALPs are drawings used to graphically depict current and future airport facilities. Standards for ALPs can be found in Advisory Circular 150/5070-6B, Airport Master Plans.

SESSION 2: During the second session, FAA presenters will overview the uniform procedures for receiving, evaluating, processing, approving/disapproving and archiving Construction Safety and Phasing Plans (CSPPs) for construction projects within the Airport Operations Area (AOA). More

FAA Engineering Briefs Update: Addition of Engineering Brief No. 9X, Light Spacing Guidance for New Taxiway Fillet Geometry — Comments due Oct. 9
The FAA recently added files to the Engineering Briefs page and is soliciting comments to be taken from industry representatives. Please send all your comments to by COB Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013 using a FAA Comment Matrix for the following engineering briefs: Engineering Brief No. 9X, Light Spacing Guidance for New Taxiway Fillet Geometry (per AC 150/5300-13A, Airport Design Change X).More

Compilation of DOT and FAA Airport Legal Determinations and Opinion Letters Through December 2012
TRB's Airport Cooperative Research Program Legal Research Digest 21 is a compilation of U.S. Department of Transportation and U.S. Federal Aviation Administration airport legal determinations and opinion letters through Dec. 31, 2011. The compilation, available in a CD format, includes indexes designed to facilitate the search for specific questions and issues. More

FAA opens the Arctic to commercial small unmanned aircraft
A research vessel plying the icy waters of the Chukchi Sea above the Arctic Circle seems an odd place for a Federal Aviation Administration employee. But that's exactly where Alaskan Region inspector Jay Skaggs was on Sept. 12. His presence aboard the Westward Wind helped ensure the first FAA-approved commercial flights by an unmanned aircraft went off safely and without a hitch.More