Industry News

Project Capital acquires BAA USA
BAA USA, developer of the AIRMALL®, an airport concessions provider in North America, was recently acquired by Prospect Capital Corporation, an investment company based in New York City. Prospect Capital Corporation purchased BAA USA from its previous owners, BAA Ltd., in a transaction completed on July 30. BAA USA will now be known as AIRMALL® USA, Inc.
AIRMALL USA remains the manager and developer of retail, food, and beverage concessions at Pittsburgh Int’l Airport, Boston Logan Int’l Airport, Baltimore/Washington Int’l Thurgood Marshall Airport, and Cleveland Hopkins Int’l Airport. The company’s headquarters will remain in Pittsburgh.

EPA clarifies its position on 100ll
The Environmental Protection Agency at EAA AirVenture 2010 tells aviation officials that its recent advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) was an information gathering exercise, and reports that the agency has not established or proposed any deadline for banning the use of lead in 100LL avgas. EPA’s remarks came in response to concerns expressed by four aviation groups. The agency also says it does not have the authority to regulate aviation fuels, which is the responsibility of FAA.

FAA Funding - another continuing resolution
Congress approves legislation that extends FAA’s operating authority through Sept. 30, while also introducing new pilot safety rules. It is the 15th extension for the FAA since full authorization expired in 2007. House lawmakers chose to split off pilot safety provisions that the families of victims of the Colgan Air crash in Buffalo in 2009 lobbied for. The safety provision covers minimum flight hours, flight and duty time, and pilot training.

Briefings ...

ACC — Airport Consultants Council presents its annual ACC Agency Best Practices Award to the FAA in recognition of its effective and efficient distribution of $1.1 billion in grant funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

ACI World — based in Geneva reports that passenger demand brought 8 percent traffic growth in June 2010 compared to June 2009 for airlines globally. North America saw a 4.4 percent decline, year over year.

ACPA — American Concrete Pavement Assn. of Skokie, IL develops an online tool for viewing and assessing the condition of more than 275 concrete overlay projects throughout the U.S. The National Concrete Overlay Explorer [] provides details about the six types of concrete overlays. Information is organized geographically as well as by applications, including airports.

ACSF — Air Charter Safety Foundation of Alexandria, VA names Bryan Burns as the foundation’s new executive director. Burns takes over for Jacqueline Rosser, who has resumed her full-time duties as the National Air Transportation Assn.’s director of regulatory affairs. Burns has 28 years of experience in the fixed base operator industry, including positions with Signature Flight Support and Jackson Hole Aviation, among others.

Aires S.A. — the second largest air carrier in Colombia, selects JFK Int’l Airport Terminal 4 as its home for the carrier’s expanded U.S. service, offering direct, non-stop flights between Bogota and New York City. Aires made its U.S. debut last December with service to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Int’l Airport.

Airport Terminal Services — of St. Louis announces the purchase of Wing Tips Inc., a Calgary Int’l Airport-based airline service provider, effective August 16.

American Eagle Airlines — the regional affiliate of American Airlines, increases nonstop service between Miami Int’l Airport (MIA) and ten cities, beginning Nov. 18.

AOPA, NBAA — at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, WI unveil six forums that will be presented as the Light Business Airplane Conference at both the NBAA Annual Meeting and Convention October 19-21 in Atlanta and the AOPA Aviation Summit November 11-13 in Long Beach, CA. Six courses include: How to Use General Aviation for Business Purposes; Tax Benefits of Aircraft Ownership; Single Pilot: Safely; Getting Reimbursed for Flights: What Do the FARs Say?; an Insurance Panel; and Moving Up to a Turbine Aircraft.

Aspen Avionics, Inc. — of Albuquerque announces a new extended (one year) product warranty program available for its line of Evolution Flight Display products.

Aviation Labor Alliance — is formed by three transportation organizations: the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, the Transport Workers Union, and the Coalition of Airline Pilots Association, representing more than 140,000 aviation workers.

Blue Grass Airport — in Lexington, KY opens a new 4,000-ft. runway, replacing the airport’s previous 3,500-ft. crosswind runway.

California Congressmen — seek legislative changes to enable Bob Hope/Burbank and Van Nuys airports in California to prohibit nighttime operations. Reps. Brad Sherman (D), Howard Berman (D), and Adam Schiff (D) want to exempt the airports from measures in the Airport Noise and Capacity Act (ANCA), which prevents the adopting of further noise restrictions on Stage 3 aircraft. Burbank recently tried to impose a nighttime ban on traffic through the Part 161 process, a move rejected by FAA.

Cessna Aircraft Co. — sells new aircraft to nine global training fleets in the first half of 2010, marked by the recent delivery of the twelfth 172 Skyhawk to a Russian training program. Since January, Cessna has delivered more than 60 aircraft to major aviation university programs globally.
• Cessna also teams with Spectrum Aeromed to develop a medical transport version of the Citation Mustang. Spectrum Aeromed, based in Fargo, ND, develops the medical interior and patient loading system for the Mustang and is pursuing a supplemental type certificate.

Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport — is constructing a $10 million fixed base operation, aided by a $3 million federal stimulus grant. The 8-acre development will include a 9,000-sq. ft. terminal, office complex, and a 12,000-sq. ft. hangar. The airport plans to seek private management for the facility, with an RFP scheduled for Oct. 1.
• Chattanooga also announces various airfield upgrades, made possible by $3 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds.

Continental Airlines — begins self-boarding testing at a gate at its hub in Houston Intercontinental. In self-boarding, passengers swipe boarding passes at a kiosk reader at the gate, opening a turnstile or door to the jet-bridge.

Crownair Aviation — is selected by Piaggio Aero to become an Avanti Authorized ServiceCenter. Crownair has locations at Montgomery Airport in San Diego and McClellan Palomar Airport in Carlsbad.

Denver Int’l Airport — will end its $100,000/year contract with the volunteer-driven Travelers Assistance Program Corp. as of Sept. 30 in order to save money.

DHS — Dept. of Homeland Security is streamlining the process for pre-screening passengers and crews departing/arriving into the U.S. on non-U.S. registered general aviation aircraft. DHS will permit pilots and operators of general aviation flights to submit a single manifest to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Electronic Advance Passenger Information System. Previously, non-U.S.-registered aircraft needed to obtain an international waiver.
• Agency also unveils a new “If You See Something, Say Something” campaign to encourage general aviation passengers and crew to report potential security threats. DHS asks pilots to use the TSA hotline to report threats — 866-GA-SECURE.

EAA — Experimental Aircraft Assn. announces its next president, Rod Hightower, who will succeed Tom Poberezny effective Sept. 7. Poberezny will remain active as chairman. Hightower currently is CEO of Public Safety Equipment of St. Louis; he has held positions with Square D Corp. and York. He holds a commercial certificate and multi-engine and instrument ratings, and served as director of the National Stearman Foundation.
• EAA is offering a $60,000 prize to the individual or corporation that can demonstrate the most promising level of achievement in E-Flight at AirVenture 2011. The prize has been made possible by equal contributions from AeroLEDs, Aircraft Spruce & Specialty, Dynon Avionics, and Wicks Aircraft Supply. The E-Flight Prize is intended to stimulate research and development in the field of electric powered flight;

EAA Airventure 2010 — reports attendance for this year’s Oshkosh, WI event at 535,000, a decrease of 7 percent from 2009. Total aircraft on hand numbered more than 10,000 at Wittman Regional Airport and neighboring facilities. Show included 777 exhibitors (up from 750) and 979 media reps from five continents.

DEN Unveils South Terminal Program

Denver Int’l Airport announces the South Terminal Redevelopment Program, expected to create more than 6,000 jobs and set for completion in 2016.

The South Terminal Redevel-opment Program includes the construction of a train station to connect the airport to downtown Denver, a signature rail bridge, and a plaza. The program also includes a planned 500-room hotel and conference center connected to the Jeppesen Terminal.

Phase II of the redevelopment includes a new parking structure and renovations to the Jeppesen Terminal Great Hall. The program will be primarily financed by General Airport Revenue Bonds.

FAA — downgrades Mexico’s aviation safety rating due to concerns about the country’s safety oversight, preventing Mexican airlines like AeroMexico and Mexicana from expanding service to the U.S. Code-sharing agreements will also be impacted.
• FAA proposes a civil penalty of $230,000 against Continental Airlines Inc., of Houston for allegedly operating a Boeing 767 on 22 revenue flights when it was not in compliance with Federal Aviation Regulations. FAA alleges that Continental replaced the nose landing gear wheel and tire assembly on a B-767 but failed to install the required axle washer despite warnings in the maintenance manual and on the tire assembly.

Farnborough Air Show — Boeing reports 103 new firm orders worth $10 billion and $4 billion in provisional orders at the London event, while Airbus records 255 orders, valued at $28 billion. Farnborough featured 1,450 exhibitors — up from 1,393 in 2009 — and a preliminary total of some $47 billion in orders.

GAMA — General Aviation Manufacturers Assn. reports that in the second quarter general aviation airplane shipments fell 9.8 percent, from 1,039 units in 2009 to 937 units this year. Billings for general aviation airplanes totaled $9.4 billion in the second quarter of 2010, up 0.2 percent.

GAO — Government Accountability Office releases a report, Aviation Safety: Improved Planning Could Help FAA Address Challenges Related to Winter Weather Operations (GAO-10-678);

General Mitchell Int’l Airport — in Milwaukee reports that June was the first month in which the airport served more than 900,000 passengers, with a count of 922,984, an increase of 212,197 (29.86 percent) over last June’s 710,767 passengers. The June total marks ten straight months of record passenger growth, and beats the previous one-month high of 896,598 passengers in March 2010.

Globaljet Corp. — a charter management firm based in Scottsdale, adds a Falcon 50EX to its fleet of managed aircraft at Manassas (VA) Regional Airport.

Hawker Beechcraft Corp. — receives certification for its Beechcraft Baron G58 and Beechcraft Bonanza G36 piston-engine aircraft from the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC). The first Bonanza in the region, which is scheduled to be delivered in third quarter 2010, will be based in Shandong Province in Northern China.
• HBC also announces that Garmin’s Synthetic Vision Technology and other associated avionics improvements will become standard equipment on its piston-engine Beechcraft Baron and Bonanza aircraft.

Honda Aircraft Co. — performs the first conforming flight test of its HondaJet, enabling the first flight within several months and FAA type certification by mid-2012. Honda reports it has over 100 orders for the new aircraft.

Kestrel Aircraft Co. — reports that former Cirrus CEO Alan Klapmeier will lead the company as it seeks to certify the Kestrel turboprop single. Kestrel will be based at Brunswick (ME) Landing (soon to be the former Naval Air Station Brunswick), and has taken an option to lease a 170,000-sq. ft. hangar built for the Navy in 2004. Kestrel is investing $100 million into the development of the mostly-composite aircraft; some 300 people will be hired initially.

JDA Aviation Technology Solutions — announces that Galaxy FBO of Conroe, TX has contracted with JDA for the 135 Pro™ certification support program, designed to simplify the process and lower costs associated with obtaining a Part 135 Certificate.

Jet Support Services, Inc. — a provider of hourly cost maintenance programs for business aviation and based in Chicago, signs an agreement with Executive AirShare, covering the engines on two Phenom 300s delivered by Embraer. The P&W 535-E engines are enrolled on the JSSI Premium Program, a comprehensive hourly cost engine maintenance program.

Indianapolis Airport Authority — and iQueue Priority Access announce they will re-open expedited security lanes for registered travelers, beginning August 16. IND is the first U.S. airport to re-establish a registered traveler service since the CLEAR registered traveler program, which was operated by Verified Identity Pass, Inc., ceased operations last June. iQueue Priority Access charges a $169 annual membership fee for a biometric identity card that provides them expedited passage through airport security checkpoints.

l-3 Security & Detection Systems — of Woburn, MA reports that six additional X-ray systems for screening both break-bulk cargo and skids have been added to TSA’s Air Cargo Qualified Technologies List. Recently qualified systems include the PX 6.4, PX-107, PX-208, PX-160P, VDS-108, and CX-Pallet 6000 P DV.

NBAA — National Business Aviation Assn. president/CEO Ed Bolen urges swift passage in the U.S. Senate of an amended proposal to renew accelerated or “bonus” depreciation for investments in strategic business assets, including aircraft. Senate is considering amendments to the House version of the Small Business Tax legislation that would include a variety of incentives aimed at boosting U.S. economic recovery.

NEFF Capital Management LLC — an aviation-focused private equity firm based in Miami, acquires Complete Turbine Services, LLC, a provider of low-cost engine performance restoration services to airlines and operating lessors worldwide and based in Ft. Lauderdale.

Northwest Florida Beaches Int’l Airport — in Panama City, in its first full month of service since its May 23, 2010 opening, reports that total passengers have increased for the month of June, year-over-year, by nearly 300 percent (83,181 enplanements). The new airport was built as part of Bay County’s 75,000-acre West Bay Sector Plan, on approximately 1,300 acres of a 4,000-acre site.

Passur Aerospace, Inc. — of Stamford, CT announces that the company’s patent-pending system-solution reduced ground congestion and delays during runway construction at JFK Int’l Airport, and is recognized as a model with “NextGen” capability. The program is a collaboration between the Port Authority of NY & NJ, the FAA, and the airlines, coordinated by PASSUR.

Philadelphia Int’l Airport — unveils Plane Fun, a summer-long program of special events through Labor Day weekend. Program features live entertainment, the Phillie Phanatic and the Phillies Ball Girls, and a new “Passenger Chillin’ Zone” which offers a living room setting with sofas, chairs, ottomans, and trees.

Pittsburgh Int’l Airport — reports that the Heinz Endowments will release a $200,000 grant to help the Allegheny County Airport Authority boost air service. Foundation money raises the authority’s marketing budget to $475,000.

Purdue University — of West Lafayette, IN contracts with Frasca International, Inc. for an Embraer Phenom Flight Training Device (FTD).
rapiscan systems — announces that the Rapiscan Secure 1000® Single Pose systems are now being deployed at Los Angeles Int’l Airport. This system is being deployed as part of TSA’s Advanced Imaging Technology program.

Salina Airport Authority — board accepts a $475,000 grant from the Kansas DOT to fund partial rehabilitation of the north 4,800 feet of taxiways Alpha, Foxtrot, and Hotel. Grant will fund half of the $950,000 project; authority’s portion will come from a 2010 bond issue.

SH&E — a subsidiary of ICF international, forms an advisory board for the commercial aviation industry to provide insight on current and future trends at airlines and airports. The SH&E Aviation Advisory Board is focused on understanding passengers’ problems and developing new solutions that will provide the industry with sustained profitability. Board members include Woodie Woodward, former FAA associate administrator for airports.

State of Kansas — pledges $27 million in bond financing to assist with Bombardier Aerospace’s facilities expansion plans to accommodate final assembly and finishing work of the Learjet 85 in Wichita. Bombardier is planning to add some 150,000 sq. ft. of space — a new paint facility, customer delivery center, flight-test facility, and expanded hangars for final assembly.

SWAAAE — Southwest Chapter of American Assn. of Airport Executives names Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport executive director Lynn Kusy its Airport Executive of the Year.

Tri-City Electrical Contractors, Inc. — of Orlando begins $1 million of work at Tampa Int’l Airport’s new multimillion-dollar baggage tunnel under a contract with Hardin Construction, Tampa.

Nadler Takes Helm of Cygnus Aviation

Cygnus Business Media, Inc., the parent of AIRPORT BUSINESS magazine, debuts Cygnus Aviation, under which its aviation properties will seek to build on the industry turnaround now underway. Company also reports that long-time editorial director John F. Infanger has been named vice president-content.

The company also names Charla Sheffield, a veteran General Mills marketing executive, as its VP of marketing for Cygnus Aviation.

Newly appointed executive vice president of aviation, Pat Nadler, outlined plans for the newly formed Cygnus Aviation, which is expected to be a 21st Century architecture model for growth and renewal. “The FAA is in the process of revolutionizing air traffic control with NextGen,” says Nadler. Citing FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt, Nadler addressed changes in the industry that are expected over the next decade. “Global airline alliances; transfer of customer service roles from airlines to airports; a business aviation climate that has settled down and is starting to recover, while becoming more international; technological changes that are changing ground movement and airfield tracking; different financial models for airlines, airports, and airport-based businesses including repair stations; every area of aviation will be transformed. Cygnus Aviation Group will be significantly positioned to take advantage of the many opportunities associated with it.”

Regarding the changing aviation services sector, Nadler cites National Air Transportation Assn. president James K. Coyne who in a recent blog noted, “A key concept of Darwin’s theory was that biological organisms, if their populations are to grow, must successfully compete in an environment that may favor some adaptations over others. In these times of unprecedented change, is there a Darwinian lesson for us as our industry evolves?”

In his expanded role, Infanger will oversee content delivery for AIRPORT BUSINESS, Aircraft Maintenance Technology, and Ground Support Worldwide magazines; as well as for the affiliate AMT Society and the annual Aviation Industry Expo, slated for Las Vegas in February.

Tucson Airport Authority — awards a three-year contract, with two one-year options, to Ace Parking Management, Inc., to operate TAA’s parking facilities, and associated shuttle bus operation at Tucson Int’l Airport.

U.S. Air Force — formally transfers 102 acres of land and over 90 facilities at the former General Mitchell Air Reserve Station to Milwaukee County’s General Mitchell Int’l Airport, providing additional economic growth opportunities for the airport and the Milwaukee area.
u.s. bizjet — flights increased for the seventh consecutive month, according to FAA’s latest Business Jet Monthly report, increasing 12.5 percent versus June 2009.

U.S. Court of Appeals — for the District of Columbia upholds DOT regulations issued in 2008 that allow airports to initiate peak-pricing. ATA says the rules are discriminatory and unreasonable. Decision permits airports to impose a two-part landing fee structure and vary landing fees at various times at congested airports.

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service — Migratory Bird Management program receives nine new Kodiak float planes to monitor and manage waterfowl and other migratory bird populations. Aircraft also can be used to conduct aerial damage assessments due to environmental disasters such as hurricanes, and enable remote sensing and survey work in portions of the continent previously inaccessible using older, limited-range aircraft.

West Star Aviation, Inc. — concludes an agreement with Yankee Pacific Aerospace, Inc. to assume 100 percent interest in Premier Aircraft, LLC of East Alton, IL.


14-18 AAAE NEC 52nd Annual Conference; Burlington, VT;
17-18 NATA Commercial Operators Tax Seminar; Indianapolis, IN;
18 NBAA Chicago Regional Forum; Chicago, IL;

11-14 79th Annual NASAO Annual Convention & Trade Show; Wichita, KS;
12-14 AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop; Washington, D.C.;
16-17 ATAG Aviation & Environment Summit; Geneva;
19-21 2010 F. Russell Hoyt National Airports Conference; San Diego, CA;
19-21 16th World Route Development Forum; Vancouver; B.C.
20-21 Aviation - The Catalyst for Economic Development; Vancouver; B.C.
26-29 ACI-NA 19th Annual Conference and Exhibition; Pittsburgh, PA;

3-5 The Role of NextGen at Airports; Denver, CO;
3-5 Airport Noise Mitigation Symposium; San Franciso, CA;
11-14 National Parking Association’s 59th Annual Convention and Exposition;
Boston, MA;
17-19 11th Annual AAAE Airport Customer Service/Volunteer Ambassador Conference; Denver, CO;
18-20 Cargo Facts Aircraft Symposium; Miami, FL;
19-21 NBAA 63rd Annual Meeting & Convention; Atlanta, GA;
22-24 1st Latin American ARFF Seminar; Cartagena, Columbia
24-26 15th Annual International Aviation Forecast Summit; New Orleans, LA;
25-27 16th Annual Central Europe/North America Airport Issues Conference; Prague, Czech Republic;

FBO Snapshots

TAC Air opens new terminal at Lexington
TAC Air, a division of Truman Arnold Companies, opens a new 12,000 sq. ft. executive terminal at Blue Grass Airport (LEX). The facility features a replica of a Beechcraft Staggerwing suspended from the atrium ceiling. TAC Air has also opened 45,000 sq. ft. of new hangar space in time for the upcoming Equestrian Games.
The TAC Air chain is currently undergoing facility upgrades at four other locations.

Melbourne to welcome Embraer Center
Embraer, one of the world’s largest aircraft manufacturers, is investing some $51 million in a state-of-the-art Customer Center and Final Assembly Facility to build and showcase its Phenom 100 and 300 aircraft at Melbourne (FL) Int’l Airport. The company is expected to bring 200 new jobs to the airport. Embraer expects the facility to be fully operational in June 2011.

AAR teams with OKC for new GA terminal
AAR and the City of Oklahoma City Department of Airports jointly announce the opening of a new fixed base operation corporate/general aviation terminal at Will Rogers World Airport. The $1.8 million, 6,000-sq. ft. facility is the culmination of a public/private partnership between AAR and the city designed to provide customers with an inviting gateway to the local business district and other attractions.