Industry News

Cessna ceo calls for environmental moderation
The general aviation industry may be stifled if industry and government fail to collaborate on environmental innovation or arrive at parochial solutions that ignore the global interoperability of the world’s transportation systems, according to Cessna Aircraft Co. chairman, president/CEO Jack J. Pelton. Speaking at the Les Respirations annual international environmental congress held outside Paris, Pelton says that “we must pursue policies and practices that balance progress and technology with environmental sensitivity.”
Globally, aviation accounts for only 2 percent of all CO2 emissions caused by burning fossil fuels, yet some seek to put an undue burden on it through unreasonable environmental regulation, Pelton says. He points out that over the past 40 years aviation has improved aircraft fuel efficiency by more than 70 percent, without government carbon emission standards, while federal emission standards for the auto industry enacted during the same period produced only about 15 percent improvement. “It’s important to note these improvements are a result of customer demand and market forces, not regulation,” Pelton says.

Airlines fined for rochester incident
U.S. DOT, in the first-ever government punishment against airlines for keeping passengers on a plane during an extended ground delay, fines Continental Airlines, one of its contractors, and another airline a total of $175,000 for a six-hour delay last summer. The fines stem from an Aug. 8 incident when some 50 passengers aboard a Houston-Minnesota Continental Express flight were diverted to Rochester, MN. DOT also fines Mesaba Airlines $75,000 because its employees at the airport refused to help disembark the passengers, saying no security personnel were available. The flight was operated by ExpressJet Airlines, and it and Continental were fined $50,000.

ACC — Airport Consultants Council presents former TSA Administrator Edmund S. “Kip” Hawley the 2009 ACC Aviation Award of Excellence. The award recognizes the contributions of an individual or group that are visionary and innovative, have advanced the airport and aviation industry, and have served the public in the process.

ACI-NA — Airports Council Int’l-North America reports that total nonaeronautical operating revenue at U.S. commercial service airports was $7.49 billion in 2008, a 6.4 percent increase from 2007 ($7.04 billion). The data from the FAA Compliance Activity Tracking System (CATS) database includes concession revenue from 521 airports, representing 100 percent of total passenger traffic. Food and beverage sales at U.S. airports totaled $569 million in 2008; retail sales in 2008 totaled $639 million, up 20 percent.

Aero Trader — a division of Dominion Enterprises based in Norfolk, VA, launches a revenue sharing program for fixed base operators. The Aero Trader FBO Affiliate Revenue Share Program facilitates the buying and selling of planes, parts, and service. FBOs receive 20 percent of the total ad rate of any advertising they refer to Aero Trader, in print and online, every time the ad runs; www.aerotrader.com.

Air Charter Safety Found-ation (ACSF) — will hold its annual Air Charter Safety Symposium on March 2-3, 2010, at Chantilly, VA; www.acsf.aero/symposium.

AirTran Airways — adds non-stop service from Milwaukee’s General Mitchell Int’l Airport to DFW Int’l, beginning April 6, 2010.

Alaska Airlines — plans to start nonstop service from Sacramento to Maui on March 26, 2010. The new service fills a void left when Aloha Airlines ceased all operations in March 2008.

Alaska Airlines — inaugurates four-times-weekly service between Oakland, and Kahului, HI and thrice-weekly service between Oakland and Kona.

Allegiant Air, LLC — announces it will move its jet service to Orlando Int’l Airport beginning March 5, 2010, relocating from the Orlando-Sanford Int’l Airport.

AOPA — Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association pays tribute to U.S. Representatives Allen Boyd (D-FL) and Vernon Ehlers (R-MI), winners of the 2009 Joseph B. “Doc” Hartranft Award, which honors the elected official or officials who have done the most in the past year to support general aviation. They are the founding members of the General Aviation Caucus in the House of Representatives.

  • AOPA also reports that some 7,294 people attended this year’s AOPA Aviation Summit at the Tampa Convention Center. Peter O. Knight Airport hosted community day activities at Airportfest.

ARGUS TRAQPak — data indicates October business aircraft activity increased 5.14 percent over the previous month; versus October 2008, activity is up 2.5 percent. ARGUS estimates the percent change of flight activity, rolling month over month, for the last twelve months is up an average of .67 percent per month. Total flight activity for the last twelve months as compared to the previous twelve months is down some 18.41 percent.

ASIG® — based in Orlando announces that its Denver Int’l Airport Fuel Facility Operation has achieved Gold Leader status under the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s Environmental Leadership Program. Since the facility opened in 1994, ASIG has managed the DEN Fuel System on behalf of the airport’s airline consortium, which consists of 20 member airlines. The facility has the world’s largest airport fuel hydrant system with 27 miles of underground pipeline. When the airport completes its solar project in December, the facility will be the first fuel system in the world to be powered by solar energy.

  • ASIG® also reports that Continental Airlines has selected it as its new aircraft deicing provider at Buffalo Niagara Int’l Airport; Continental also renewed agreements with ASIG for deicing services at seven other airports including Bradley Int’l, Cincinnati / Northern Kentucky Int’l, Detroit Metro, and General Mitchell Int’l airports.

Austin Straubel Int’l Airport — in Green Bay, WI introduces the San-i-Pak autoclave, which allows fixed base operators at the airport to sterilize trash coming in on flights — or ships — from other countries. The unit is intended to facilitate Austin Straubel becoming a potential stopping-off point for international air traffic entering the country.

BAA — Cleveland, developers of the AIRMALL® at CLE, welcomes Cheeburger Cheeburger and Subway to the airport.

Cessna Aircraft Co.— a Textron Inc. company celebrates the first production Citation CJ4 rolled off the assembly line at the company’s primary manufacturing facilities in Wichita. FAA certification is in the final stages with deliveries starting in the first half of 2010.

  • Cessna also delivers the 300th Citation X to its authorized sales representative, Jetalliance, based in Vienna, Austria.

Chicago Department of Aviation — and the Village of Bensenville reach a settlement in which the City of Chicago will acquire the remaining Village of Bensenville-owned properties and rights-of-way, and the Village will dismiss pending demolition court cases. It will also drop its court objections to city acquisitions of property. A portion of the acquisition area will be de-annexed from Bensenville and annexed to the city. In exchange, the airport will pay Bensenville $16 million.

Cobham — of Mineral Wells, TX reports that its HeliSAS two-axis helicopter stability and autopilot system has received its first Supplemental Type Certification from FAA for use in a Robinson model R44 aircraft. Working with Hoh Aeronautics, Inc. of Lomita, CA, Cobham is in the process of achieving HeliSAS certification for use on the Bell 206, Bell 407, Eurocopter AS350, and U.S. Navy’s Bell-made TH-57 helicopters.

Dallas Love Field — reports its big facelift is slightly behind schedule, but both the city and Southwest Airlines expect an on-time finish for the $519 million project. Southwest is backing the bulk of bonds totalling some $519 million. Completion is expected by the end of 2014 to coincide with the phasing out of Wright Amendment restrictions that limit how far airliners can fly nonstop from Love.

Delaware North Companies Travel Hospitality Services — at Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood Int’l Airport partners with celebrity chef Allen Susser to develop Chef Allen 2 Go branded menu items for the airport.

Detroit Metropolitan Airport — (DTW) will further reduce its consumption of fossil fuels by producing its own wind energy at two locations on opposite ends of the facility.

Era Systems Corporation — a subsidiary of SRA International, Inc. based in Fairfax, VA, (NYSE: SRX), announces that its AirScene®.com Noise and Operations Monitoring System (NOMS) for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority has been successfully installed at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and Washington Dulles Int’l Airport.

FAA — Federal Aviation Administration finalizes a federal rule, effective November 19, 2009, to enhance safety by separating low-altitude, local aircraft flights over the Hudson River from flights transiting through the river airspace. The rule now requires pilots to follow safety procedures that were previously recommended, but were not mandatory. The rule also will incorporate provisions of an October 2006 Notice to Airmen that restricted fixed-wing aircraft in the exclusion zone over the East River to seaplanes landing or taking off on the river or those specifically approved by FAA air traffic control.

  • FAA also is proposing to put limits on airlines and other operators hiring FAA safety inspectors and their managers for two years after those employees leave the agency. Proposed rule would prohibit air carriers, flight schools, repair stations, and other certificated organizations from employing or contracting with former FAA inspectors and managers to represent them in agency matters if the former employee had any direct oversight of the certificate holder in the preceding two years. The rule also would apply to anyone who owns or manages a fractional ownership program aircraft.

Finnair — begins once-a-week passenger and cargo service between Miami Int’l Airport and Helsinki, Finland. utilizing a B757 aircraft.

Florence & Hutcheson — of Raleigh, NC receives a Grand Award for Engineering Excellence from the American Council of Engineering Companies of North Carolina for its work on the Bryan Boulevard Relocation at Piedmont Triad Int’l Airport. The complex project was seen as one of the critical aspects of the airport’s overall expansion to land the one million square foot Mid-Atlantic FedEx Hub.

Forecast International — in a newly released study on “The Market for Business Jet Aircraft,” predicts that a total of 11,277 business jets, worth an estimated $197 billion, will be produced in the ten-year period from 2009 through 2018. Production is expected to total approximately 825 units in 2009, followed by 738 units in 2010, and 716 in 2011. Annual production is projected to rise in 2012 and continue improving through the remainder of the forecast timeframe.

  • Also, FI’s “The Market for Regional Transport Aircraft” projects that a total of 3,754 regional aircraft will be produced during the next ten years (2009-2018).

GAMA — General Aviation Manu-facturers Assn. teams up with the Int’l Business Aviation Council to launch an aggressive strategy to further mitigate the industry’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The program is consistent with the International Civil Aviation Organization’s proposal for global aviation sectoral management of targets and monitoring of emissions. Business aviation’s worldwide carbon emissions are approximately 2 percent of all aviation and .04 percent of global man-made carbon emissions. Industry has pledged carbon-neutral growth by 2020; an improvement in fuel efficiency of an average of 2 percent per year until 2020; and, a reduction in total carbon emissions of 50 percent by 2050, relative to 2005.

  • GAMA also reports deliveries of general aviation aircraft have fallen 47 percent in the first nine months of 2009 when compared with the same time a year ago. Planemakers shipped 1,587 piston aircraft, turboprops, and business jets in the first nine months, down from 2,982 a year ago. Billings are down 23.5 percent.

Global Aviation Services, Inc. — at George Bush Intercontinental in Houston and a factory authorized Twin Commander Service Center, adds Grand Renaissance completions to its list of capabilities.

Greater Toronto Airports Authority — implements a new Night Flight Restriction Program (NFRP) on November 1, under which all Stage 3 or Stage 4 aircraft not operating on a scheduled and repetitive basis are required to request permission to operate during the restricted hours between 12:30 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. Operations of Stage 2 aircraft are not permitted from 12:00 midnight to 7:00 a.m. The Canadian Business Aviation Association has planned a meeting with airport authorities to request that a fair and equitable allocation of slots be made available to business aviation.

Gwinnett County (GA) — officials are asked to consider selling or leasing Briscoe Field, the county-owned airport located in Lawrenceville, by an unidentified company that wants to convert the airport into a private enterprise under the FAA’s Airport Privatization Pilot Program.

Horizon Airlines — adds frequency to San Jose, CA and begins non-stop service to Spokane, WA on March 26 from Sacramento, utilizing 76-seat Bombardier Q400s.

Orlando Sanford Int’l Airport — solicits bids to build a new 44,000-sq. ft. tension membrane hangar and attached office and maintenance shop.The hangar space will accommodate Avocet Capital LLC, which relocated its facilities from Opa-Locka Airport in May. Avocet plans to employ more than 150 employees at the new facility.

Halifax Int’l Airport Authority — issues a request for proposals for additional retail shops and services.

Hawker Beechcraft Corp. — announces the sale and delivery of 12 aircraft to the Saudi Arabia Presidency of Meteorology and Environment (PME). Order consists of one Hawker 900XP, two Hawker 400XP, one King Air 350, two King Air B200GT and six King Air C90GTi aircraft.

IATA — Int’l Air Transport Association reports the signing of a Multilateral Statement of Policy Principles regarding the Implementation of Bilateral Air Service Agreements by seven states and the European Commission. Chile, Malaysia, Panama, Singapore, Switzerland, the United Arab Emirates, the U.S. and the European Commission signed the agreement.

Jacksonville Aviation Authority — introduces an electric cart shuttle system for travelers at Jacksonville Int’l Airport; battery operated, eco-friendly.

JDA Aviation Technology Solutions — of Bethesda, MD announces that FAA has renewed its Part 121 Certification Consultant Agreement through November 2011. Under the program, qualified firms may be used by Part 121 applicants to assist a new entrant carrier with the FAA certification process.

Kelly Aerospace Power Systems, Inc. — gets Part 145 EASA approval from the European Aviation Safety Agency, allowing Kelly Aerospace Power Systems to export all overhauled and PMA replacement parts to customers in any EASA member country; www.kellyaerospace.com

Kissimmee Air Museum — located at the Kissimmee (FL) Gateway Airport, expands its flight operations to include Helicopter flights and instruction. Warbird Adventures has been offering T-6 flights since 1998; it will also be offering flights and instruction in a Robinson 44 helicopter to pilots and non-pilots.

Long Beach Airport — launches the QuieterHome program to renovate houses that FAA has determined are the most affected by airport noise. Cost of creating the QuieterHome program and renovating the first 27 homes is estimated at $3million, or $30,000 to $40,000 per home.

Louis Armstrong Int’l Airport — in New Orleans is embarking on a $755 million modernization project that will be highlighted by the construction of a new concourse and the eventual abandonment of two old ones. Airport has identified 16 projects and already begun design or construction on ten.

Melbourne (fl) Int’l Airport — announces three flights daily to Charlotte on US Airways, starting in February 2010. The Melbourne Airport Authority unanimously approved the US Airways deal which provides the airline with waivers on fees and other charges totaling $850,000 annually over a two-year period, including $300,000 in above-wing services. The airport also will work to promote the new flights through funding from a Small Community Air Service Development Grant awarded by U.S. DOT in 2006. US Airways has committed to remain at the airport at least through Feb. 10, 2012.

  • The Melbourne airport also reports the start of construction for Embraer’s $50 million aircraft showroom and assembly plant.

Meridian Air Charter — at Teterboro, NJ expands its charter fleet with the addition of a Challenger 601 3A- ER - extended range aircraft, based at Greensboro NC (GSO).

Mexicana Airlines — expands service to Mexico from Oakland Int’l Airport, adding service to León and San Miguel de Allende

Miami Int’l Airport — unveils ‘Faces of Freedom: Behind the Looms’, a photography exhibition documenting efforts to end child labor in South Asia’s carpet industry, on display through April. The collection by award-winning photographer U. Roberto Romano portrays the lives of “carpet kids” – children illegally employed to weave carpets in India, Nepal, and Pakistan.

Million Air Dallas — announces the addition of a Challenger 300 to its fleet, which now numbers 20 aircraft.

MINNEAPOLIS-ST. PAUL Int’l Airport — announces that restaurants Arby’s® and Ike’s have opened concession outlets.

Myrtle Beach Int’l Airport — will have a non-stop international flight again beginning Feb. 28, when Porter Airlines begins service to the Toronto Island Airport.

NAFI — National Association of Flight Instructors and PilotJourney.com, already partnered in the NAFI Group Membership program, launch an affiliate program designed to help flight schools sell discovery flights and to support their National Association of Flight Instructors. PilotJourney.com’s Discovery Flight certificate will be offered through the NAFI website and can be directly offered on a flight school’s own Web pages; visit www.pilotjourney.com/nafi/.

  • NAFI National Association of Flight Instructors submits its review and comments to an FAA Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that covers a variety of changes to pilot-certification requirements and training procedures. NAFI calls for further research on a number of the proposals before rules are finalized; www.NAFINet.org.

NATA — National Air Transportation Association’s Safety 1st program launches a customized online training tool that provides pilots and crew members flying into and out of Teterboro (NJ) Airport access to critical safety information about the airport, including its location, layout, operations, regulations, and safety and security procedures; visit www.airportflightcrewbriefing.com/teterboro.

nextgen air traffic control — is the subject of a Nov. 23 letter to House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman James Oberstar (D-MN) and Ranking Member John Mica (R-FL) from 19 industry associations which explains that funding for NextGen would “provide a platform for domestic job creation thereby ensuring that the civil aviation and travel industries — which directly and indirectly generate over 10 million jobs and $1.2 trillion in economic activity annually — can continue to positively contribute to growth in the domestic economy.” Groups say that providing funding to move forward with the switch from ground-based radar to satellite-based infrastructure would create thousands of jobs.

NTSB — National Transportation Safety Board issues another round of recommendation letters calling for increased oversight, equipage, and training for helicopter emergency medical services (HEMS). Agency recommends FAA seek legislative authority to regulate HEMS operations conducted using government-owned aircraft, and that public HEMS operators increase their flight-risk-evaluation training. Recommendations stem from the Sept. 27, 2008, accident involving a Eurocopter helicopter operated by the Maryland State Police on a public medical evacuation flight.

OAG — reports that global airline capacity for November 2009 showed positive growth compared to November 2008, with the world’s airlines having 285.4 million seats available, a rise of 3 percent over November 2008; www.oagaviation.com.

Priester Aviation, LLC — of Wheeling, IL adds a Learjet 60 and Challenger 601-3AER to its fleet of charter aircraft, with the latter based at its new location at Dupage (IL) Airport.

Rapid Air — a fixed based operator based at Grand Rapids, MI, changes its name to Grand Rapids Air Center.

Redbird Flight Simulations™, Inc., — an aircraft simulation tools and training devices provider, expands its Austin, TX operation. Since the 2008 FAA approval of the Redbird AATD’s, the company has exceeded its sales projections by over 50 percent; www.redbirdflightsimulations.com.

Reno-Tahoe Int’l Airport — unveils a new baggage and check-in area; a key element of the $63 million project is a 1.3-mile baggage conveyor system. Airlines moved ticket counters to the south end of the terminal during 22 months of construction.

ROCKWELL COLLINS — expands its aftermarket service offerings with the acquisition of AR Group, parent company of business aviation trip-planning firm Air Routing International. Terms were not disclosed. Air Routing will remain based in Houston.

Sidney-Richland Airport — in Bismarck, ND announces that Trinity Technologies, based in Virginia, will take over security operations from TSA moving forward.

TWC Aviation, Inc. — based in Los Angeles signs a letter of intent to acquire ACM Aviation LLC, an aircraft management and charter company headquartered in San Jose, CA. The combined company will expand services to over 18 locations domestically and internationally with a combined fleet of over 70 jets.

US Airways Group Inc. — pilots ask federal regulators to investigate the carrier’s proposed swap of flight slots with Delta Air Lines Inc. at two airports, saying the plan may result in higher fares and job losses.

In Memoriam: Edward W. Stimpson
Ambassador Edward W. Stimpson, the founding and long-time head of the General Aviation Manufacturers Assn. and a leader in obtaining liability reform, died Nov. 25 at his home in Boise, ID after fighting cancer. He was 75.

Stimpson later became the U.S. representative to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), and then chairman of the Flight Safety Foundation (FSF). He is credited as playing a central role in enactment of the General Aviation Revitalization Act of 1994, which capped manufacturers’ product liability at 18 years. Among the awards given to him are the NBAA Award for meritorious service and the Wright Brothers Memorial Trophy for lifetime achievement.

DeCota Honored
The late Bill DeCota was remembered “as a national leader who was passionate about aviation and the national air transportation system” by the Aero Club of Washington, which named him the recipient of its Donald D. Engen Trophy for Aviation Excellence. Susan M. Baer, who now succeeds him as the Port Authority of NY &NJ’s aviation director, accepted the award for DeCota from the Aero Club’s board of governors.

DeCota served as the agency’s aviation director from December 1999 until his unexpected death in September 2009.

Tenant Snapshots

Westwind technologies opens at Huntsville
In what is termed an unprecedented public/private partnership, WestWind Technologies, Inc. celebrates the grand opening of its new Huntsville Aircraft Modification & Integration Center. It marks the first time the Huntsville Int’l Airport has partnered with a small business; the new 62,000-sq. ft. facility provides engineering, manufacturing, electronics integration, and structural modifications and can accommodate large fixed-wing (C-130s) and multiple rotary-wing aircraft simultaneously.

Since Redstone Arsenal is the center of aviation for the U.S. Army, WestWind designed the hangar to accommodate every type of helicopter in the Army’s inventory. The aircraft center also offers full maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) capabilities for a broad spectrum of military and commercial aircraft.

Castle & cooke grows at Van nuys
Castle & Cooke Aviation Services, Inc. announces the approval of a 30-year lease at its fixed base operation at Van Nuys Airport. The L.A. City Council and the Los Angeles World Airports Board of Airport Commissioners unanimously approved a new master lease for Castle while also confirming Castle’s status as a full-service FBO.

Castle has operated a corporate hangar and fuel farm at VNY since 1980, serving primarily Fortune 500 flight departments based in Southern California. Castle will redevelop existing facilities on two lease sites by constructing a new 50,000-sq. ft. hangar and office building, a customer service lobby, and pour concrete for a 75,000-sq. ft. aircraft apron.

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