Ribbon cutting for the first Southwest Airlines' flight out of Lambert-St. Louis. (upper left) Southwest's 30th birthday party celebration. (upper right) Southwest airliner arriving this morning at Lambert. (bottom)
Southwest celebrates 30 years after it began service at Lambert on St. Patrick's Day in 1985. Herb Kelleher, founder of Southwest Airlines, was joined by several St. Louis area leaders for an inaugural ribbon cutting ceremony at their single gate. Southwest's initial service out of St. Louis consisted of 19 flights a day to Chicago, Houston, Kansas City, and New Orleans. Over the past 30 years, Southwest Airlines has become Lambert's biggest airline, operating nearly 100 flights a day to 36 destinations.
Southwest Airlines' St. Louis team celebrated by having a 30th birthday party today at Lambert, as shown in the top right photo. Employees enjoyed food, beverages, small carnival games, and a huge celebratory custom cake.
Lambert-St. Louis International Airport recognized its customer service Ambassador of the Year and honored dozens of other employees who have been “caught” giving great customer service in 2014.
The Ambassador of the Year is Dorothy Lathrop, a Supervisor Transportation Security Officer (STSO) for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). She was a Catch Us Giving winner in August after helping to locate several soldiers in the C Concourse who were about to miss their bus to Fort Leonard Wood. Once she found them in the concourse, she urged them to leave immediately to make the bus so they could avoid any risk of discipline. In the end, she also covered their restaurant tabs totaling more than $70.
“Dorothy demonstrated empathy and went well beyond her scope of work to help out these young men who, no doubt, were grateful for her kindness and concern,” said Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “We have many other airport employees who make a daily commitment to excellent customer service for our passengers which builds a positive and lasting impression for Lambert and the St. Louis region.”
“I sincerely applaud Dorothy’s generous act of taking care of our servicemen,” said Bill Switzer, Federal Security Director for Missouri. “Her very thoughtful and sincere actions were in keeping with her convictions of always doing the right thing.”
The Catch Us Giving Annual Awards Celebration honored all the customer service nominees for 2014. More than 170 employees of Lambert and its Airport partners, tenants and airlines received nominations.
Employees are nominated, or “caught,” by customers, colleagues or their supervisors for superior customer service moments. Lambert received more than 500 Catch Us Giving nominations in 2014. The Catch Us Giving Committee, consisting of representatives from major Lambert tenants, airlines and service providers, elects two monthly winners, who are then eligible for the Ambassador of the Year award.
Lambert-St. Louis International Airport unveiled a 5-year strategic plan to build on the momentum of several transformational campaigns that have improved airport facilities, improved customer services and strengthened air service over the last several years. Visit www.lambertexperience.com to see the full story.
Lambert’s 2015-2020 Strategic Plan, first made public before the St. Louis Airport Commission meeting Feb. 4, is built on a foundation for operational excellence with four core objectives:
· Sustain and grow passenger air service
· Strengthen financial stability
· Create a positive and lasting impression for the region
· Generate economic development
Each of the core objectives are linked to key metrics for success. Some of the metrics include lowering cost per enplaned passenger, growing non-aeronautical revenues, increasing the number of non-stop markets, improving airport satisfaction scores, increasing cargo revenues and generating more revenue from underutilized land assets. For the full strategic report, click here.
“This is an exciting story of change, of progress and a glimpse of what the future holds for Lambert-St. Louis International Airport,” said Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “This is the Airport’s first strategic plan in more than two decades that goes beyond expansion projects or major airport construction projects. This is about revenue growth, financial stability and helping to empower our region for economic success.”
The Airport’s strategic plan was developed with the collaboration of the St. Louis business community with support by Civic Progress and the Regional Business Council. The road map fits St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay's vision of growing the region's economic health and capitalizing on one of its greatest assets.
A community advisory group, consisting of business and regional leaders, helped shape the plan along with the Airport’s key management team and several members of the St. Louis Airport Commission. The plan was facilitated by Collaborative Strategies.
Lambert’s 2015-2020 Strategic Plan is being launched following the just-completed $70 million Airport Experience Program. Airport Experience renovations, which began in 2008, focused on major interior and operational improvements to Terminal 1, Concourses A & C, as well as new airport signage on roadways leading to both Terminals 1 and 2. The final project in the program was completed in December 2014 with the installation of a new copper roof for Terminal 1, replacing the original 1956 copper roof that was beyond repair. Another $30 million was invested in facilities as part of the recovery from the 2011 tornado. Another $50 million was invested in a more efficient and secure outbound baggage system, which made its debut in both terminals in 2014. The transformation of terminals and concourses can be seen at www.lambertexperience.com .
In addition to the major makeover of airport facilities, the Airport has also been successful in responding to and overcoming major airline flight reductions, expanding retail and restaurant offerings, building new business and community partnerships, and creating an art and culture program that helps create a more welcoming gateway for 13 million passengers and visitors every year.
Southwest Airlines flight 1625 from Los Angeles circles just south of St. Louis's Tower Grove Park before landing at Lambert on January 30.
It's one of the fascinating experiences of flying, getting the window seat for an aerial view of the city you know so well from the ground. Descending down from the clouds, after flying at 30,000 ft. plus in the air, pilots maneuver the aircraft to line up the plane for its designated runway. Whether the aircraft circles in or makes a straight shot toward the runway, these are the fun few minutes passengers get to spot familiar highways, parks, neighborhoods and other landmarks. In 2014, airline pilots made their final approach into Lambert-St. Louis International Airport 80,581 times. That's an average of 220 per day and more than 250 during peak summer travel months. Southwest Airlines carried the most passengers again this year, serving 6.2 million travelers. It took 29,918 final approaches to pull that off. And another 29,918 takeoffs, too.
Lambert-St. Louis International Airport served 12,384,015 passengers in 2014, a 1.5 percent decrease in total traffic versus 2013. Enplanements (industry standards for boarding passengers) for the year were down 1.6 percent or 6.2 million. Arriving passenger traffic was down 1.4 percent, or 6.14 million this year.
The slight decline in year-over-year passenger activity is strongly linked to the first quarter when a number of winter storms across the U.S. caused widespread cancellations. For instance, in January 2014, passenger activity dropped 6.5 percent, mostly due to flight cancellations.
“Even though St. Louis was hit with a few storms, the real decline was linked to weather that caused major disruptions along the eastern seaboard,” said Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “As we look to 2015, we already see positive passenger service developments with new non-stop service starting to Austin, TX, Portland, OR, and Fort Dodge, IA.”
For 2014, Southwest Airlines recorded a market share of 50.4 percent for passengers served at Lambert. American airlines recorded a 14.4 percent followed by Delta with 13.9 percent of passenger traffic.
Art, architecture and aviation enthusiasts now have a chance to own limited edition prints created from reclaimed copper from the historic Terminal 1 roof at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport.
Three St. Louis presses each developed imagery inspired by Lambert and the nostalgia of travel as part of a commission by the Lambert Art and Culture Program. The Firecracker Press, Pele Prints, and Yellow Bear employed a variety of processes, including woodcuts, etching, and chine-colle to alter reclaimed copper tiles. This allowed 60 years of marks to be forever impressed into these pieces of fine art.
In 2014, Lambert completed the replacement of the terminal’s original copper roof installed prior to its opening in 1956. The presses each transformed one of the weathered, historic tiles into a printmaking plate. The malleable copper tiles, shining with a green patina from years of wear and weather, were conditioned and shaped by the presses, ultimately forming printmaking plates to transfer imagery onto paper.
The three series of prints are 15” x 20”. Artist Amanda Verbeck of Pele Prints used the copper plate to incorporate flight paths onto colorful paper airplanes for “Take Fight.” Gina Alvarez of Yellow Bear used the copper to produce clouds connected by aviation navigation paths in “I Remember When.” The Firecracker Press used both copper and woodcuts to create whimsical setting featuring a couple taking off on vacation at Lambert in “The Honeymoon.”
“These are beautiful works of art that appeal to both art lovers and those interested in the historic Lambert terminal,” said Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “Each purchase directly supports the continued exhibition of art at Lambert, an added bonus for both travelers and our community.”
These limited edition prints are for sale via the Lambert Airport Art shop on Etsy and through Lambert’s PR office at 314-426-8125. The Lambert Art and Culture Program sponsors both temporary exhibitions and permanent art installations with a mission to enhance the visual appearance of the Airport and support the arts in the St. Louis region.
Southwest Airlines announced it will expand operations at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (STL) with new daily service to Austin, TX (AUS) beginning June 28, 2015. Tickets are available now for the new daily flight, which was part of the airline’s peak summer schedule released this week.
“Daily service between Lambert and Austin-Bergstrom International Airport has been a top priority for this region based on the companies who do regular business in both our cities, as well as the overall growth of passenger traffic between St. Louis and Austin,” said Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge, Lambert Director.
“This new route will open new opportunities for St. Louis’ growing number of entrepreneurs and businesses,” said Ron Ricks, Southwest Airlines’ Executive Vice President. “This is an exciting opportunity to connect two cities focused on innovation and growth – which is really what Southwest’s purpose is all about: connecting people to what’s important in their lives.”
They are small, tightly coiled objects of found art, but they are woven with creative history and mystery. The Lambert Art and Culture Program has opened a new exhibit, “Philadelphia Wireman,” in the Terminal 1 Ticketing Lounge, on display through June 2015.
The exhibit features 20 intricate wire sculptures from the collections of two galleries: Fleisher/Ollman Gallery of Philadelphia and the William Shearburn Gallery of St. Louis. The pieces come from a discovery in Philadelphia in the early 1980s. Hundreds of these wire-figure creations, which resemble the human body or architectural motifs, were left abandoned in an alley. The creator is unknown but is believed to be a man who may have scavenged for all the elements of his art from the streets. Since then, the mystery artist’s work has been exhibited around the world. This is one of the rare times that parts of the collection have been viewed out of a museum or gallery setting.
“I love the idea of the Philadelphia Wireman or anything that is art taken out into another context,” said William Shearburn, William Shearburn Gallery. “They are extremely powerful and packed with energy.”
Experts believe the collection is one of the greatest examples of self-taught art, with African-American and Tribal influences. With wire as the primary material in the pieces, the artist also included other found material such as foil, plastic, newspaper, batteries, hinges and matchbooks.
The Lambert Art and Culture Program sponsors both temporary exhibitions and permanent art installations with a mission to enhance the visual impression of the Airport and support the arts in the St. Louis region.
Turning what was once considered just a craft into amazing visual pieces, Missouri fiber artists are pushing their creativity for mainstream audiences with a new exhibition, 3D Fiber Explorations, at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport. Free and open to the public, the exhibition runs December 5, 2014 through April 4, 2015 in The Lambert Gallery in the bag claim level of Terminal 1.
3D Fiber Explorations is presented by Missouri Fiber Artists and sponsored by the Lambert Art and Culture Program and the Regional Arts Commission. The exhibit’s 23 works from local artists will prompt the visitor to pause for a moment and to see fiber work in a new light, beyond craft and into the realm of fine art. Materials for this exhibition include paper, wool, felt, linen thread, silk, cotton and other materials. The fiber art genre includes surface designers, felters, embroiderers, dyers, quilters, weavers, basket makers, paper makers and more.
Through innovation and creativity, Missouri Fiber Artists also strives to place St. Louis into the realm of a lively and innovative city. Works in this exhibit are contributions to the multitude of fine art in St. Louis. Artists include Shirley Boudreaux, Kacey Cowdery, Tracy Deniszczuk, Katherine Ehlmann, Candyce Grisham, Pamela J Gruer, Laurie Harper, Joanne Kluba, Sandy Kolde, Hae-jung Larsen, Tamryn McDermott, Shirley Nachtrieb, Pat Owoc, Joyce Pion, Rhonda Schrum, Phyllis Shipman, Susan Sontag, Leandra Spangler, Janet Frazee Wade, Barbara A Zappulla.
The Lambert Art and Culture Program sponsors a rotating exhibition schedule in The Lambert Gallery featuring local and regional arts organizations. Previous exhibitors include the Photography Hall of Fame & Museum, Missouri State Museum, Foundry Art Centre, Craft Alliance and the Griot Museum of Black History.
A seven-member Airport Art Advisory Committee led the selection effort for the latest series of exhibitions at the Lambert Gallery. Members are David Allen, Director of Metro Arts in Transit; Susan Marie Barrett, Director of the World Chess Hall of Fame; Laura Helling, Director of Development for Wings of Hope; Marilu Knode, Director of Laumeier Sculpture Park; Jill McGuire, Executive Director for the St. Louis Regional Arts Commission; Kiku Obata, Founding Principal of Kiku Obata & Co.; and Freida L. Wheaton, Salon 53 and Founder of Alliance of Black Art Galleries.
Alaska Airlines announced new non-stop service between Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (STL) and Portland International Airport (PDX) that will begin July 1, 2015.
The daily flights between St. Louis, MO and Portland, OR will be served on new 76-seat Embraer E-175 jets operated by Sky West Airlines. Portland has been one of Lambert’s highest-demand markets without year-round non-stop service.
“Portland has been a key focus for us as a destination because of the strong demand within our business community. Portland is also a top market for leisure and vacation travel, as well,” said Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge, Lambert Director.
Alaska Airlines, operating out of Lambert’s C Concourse, has offered non-stop service between St. Louis and Seattle since 2010. Last month, Alaska announced it’s expanding its Seattle service this summer with two daily roundtrip flights.
Alaska Airlines announced that the new E175 aircraft were purchased specifically for its St. Louis service and other new destinations in its network system.
"The E175 is new for the Alaska brand and fills a specific need to serve ‘long, thin routes' – destinations that are too distant for our regional aircraft, but currently don't have enough customer demand to fill a mainline jet," said Andrew Harrison, senior vice president of planning and revenue management for Alaska Airlines. "The smaller, but spacious, E175 jet will not only open up new cities, but provide feed traffic to our Northwest hubs, while giving customers a comfortable experience on these longer flights."
The new daily service will depart PDX at 10:15 a.m. and arrive in STL at 3:55 p.m. The flight will then depart STL at 4:35, arriving in PDX at 6:45 p.m.
Introductory fares are available for purchase by December 1 for travel between July 8 and September 30, 2015 at www.alaskaair.com.
Avoid parking fees the next time you pick up a passenger. Lambert provides free waiting zones for motorists near each terminal.