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Lambert News

Lambert Passenger Activity Dips in 1st Quarter of 2014

Severe winter weather through the first three months of 2014 impacted travel numbers for Lambert-St. Louis International Airport. Through the first quarter, when Lambert experienced a large number of airline cancellations due to weather across the U.S., Lambert saw a 4.4 percent drop in total passengers. The Airport recorded 2,731,968 total passengers (arriving and departing) vs 2,858,057 in the same time frame in 2013.

The number of aircraft departures dropped 7.8 percent in the first three months versus 2013, another indication of the impact of cancelled flights.

“The impact on our flight activity was not unexpected considering we just faced one of the worst winter seasons in the last two decades. And it wasn’t just here, but across the U.S.,” said Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge.  “We certainly don’t see this as a trend that will continue because we’ve moved into the better weather seasons.”

Lambert to Stage Emergency Drill, Simulate Aircraft Fire on Runway April 19

Lambert-St. Louis International Airport will shut down runway 11/29 on the morning of Saturday, April 19 to hold a 2-hour full scale exercise of its emergency plan involving the response to an aircraft crash.

During the training, Airport Rescue Firefighters (ARFF) will be the first responders and will attack a live fire produced from a Mobile Aircraft Trainer, a 50-ft fuselage which produces flames to simulate a fully engulfed aircraft (pictured left). The exercise begins at 10 a.m. and will be completed by 12 noon.

The aircraft firefighting trainer will be staged at the east end of Runway 11/29 as part of a mock crash site of a jet.

Airport Police, EMS, and dozens of other departments will be participating in the drill along with support from Lambert airlines and two area hospitals.

As part of the exercise, the Airport’s emergency responders will coordinate the treatment and transportation of crash victims, made up of a few dozen volunteers.  Some of the volunteers will be transported to area hospitals to extend the emergency training to those facilities. Airline staff will simulate the operation of a victim support center in the Airport, which is required by the FAA during major aircraft incidents.

The full scale emergency plan exercise is required for all commercial airports by the FAA every three years.

Pasta House & Schlafly Combine Brands for New Airport Venue

The Pasta House Co. and Schlafly Beer are two well-known brands in St. Louis with venues at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport.  They have now expanded at Lambert with a combination venue in Terminal 2 that now features the best of both the Pasta House and Schlafly craft brews.

The 1,500 sq. ft. restaurant and bar is open across from Gate E4 serving passengers for Southwest Airlines and Air Tran Airways.

 Passengers can find all the traditional Pasta House menu items from spaghetti, lasagna, penne primavera and pizza. Appetizers, sandwiches, soups, salads and burgers are also on the menu. Customers will find the full selection of Schlafly beers at this location as well as rotating food specials inspired by Schlafly, which operates three restaurant locations in St. Louis including its venue in Concourse C. The other Pasta House location is in the lower level of Terminal 1. There are 16 company-owned and franchise-operated Pasta House Co. locations throughout St. Louis with other stores in eastern Missouri and western Kentucky.

The new venue is solely operated by St. Louis based OHM Concessions Group, LLC.  OHM also operates other airport venues, including Dunkin Donuts and Great American Bagel as a sub-contractor for HMSHost, the Airport’s food and beverage concessionaire.

Roofing Crews Lay Down First Section of New Copper on Terminal 1 Roof

Warmer weather and bright skies are helping to push the major Terminal 1 copper roof replacement project along at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport. After a few weeks of demolition of the original roof and sub-layers on the first dome under construction, there was a mini milestone.

Roofers layed down the first section of new copper. One down and thousands more to go.

Mike Shannon's Bringing Steaks and Baseball History to Lambert

St. Louis sports fans rejoice. One of St. Louis’ most popular restaurants is expanding with a new location at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport in the A Concourse. Mike Shannon’s Grill will be the third location for the family owned steak and seafood restaurant, which is named for the former St. Louis Cardinals player and the team’s long-time radio and TV broadcaster.  It will open by early summer.

The signature Mike Shannon’s near Busch Stadium in downtown St. Louis has been an institution for 25 years because of its menu and its stunning collection of Cardinals and baseball memorabilia.  The Airport location will carry a similar theme and a variation on the menu featured at Mike Shannon’s Grill in nearby Edwardsville, Ill.

 “This will be upscale comfort food with some of our signature steakhouse cuts,” said owner Pat Shannon-VanMatre.  Menu items will include salads, wraps, soups and burgers.  Petite filets and ribeyes, along with fish and chicken, round out the meal selections on the menu.  A breakfast menu will also be available at the airport location.

The restaurant, to be located adjacent to gate A12 at the location currently operated as The Local, will also feature one-of–a kind Cardinals and baseball memorabilia collected by Mike Shannon over decades.

“We hope people coming through appreciate that St. Louis is the best baseball town in the country,” said Shannon-VanMatre.   

 The new Mike Shannon’s Grill is part of a partnership with HMSHost, Lambert’s master food and beverage concessionaire. The new restaurant will feature nearly 90 seats in the dining and bar areas. The space will be renovated in the coming weeks with dark leather upholstered seating accented by wood finishes and rounded out with a custom display of some amazing baseball history.

Southwest Airlines Announces New Non-Stop from St. Louis to SFO

Southwest Airlines is expanding service this year from St. Louis to three destinations including new non-stop service to San Francisco International Airport (SFO). The daily roundtrip service to SFO from Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (STL) will begin September 30, 2014.

Also this year, Southwest announced it is expanding service from STL to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Starting June 8, service to LAX will increase from two daily roundtrips to three daily roundtrips. The DCA service will also increase from two daily flights to three daily flights beginning November 2.

“We’re excited about the additional non-stop service to SFO because we have strong flow of traffic there and we think that market will do well,” said Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “The increased flights to Washington DC and Los Angeles are just as valuable for this region and we applaud southwest for continuing to look at new opportunities for growth that increases connectivity to and from our region.”

Southwest is Lambert’s largest carrier currently operating 91daily departures to 33 non-stop destinations. Its wholly-owned subsidiary, Air Tran Airways, operates another two flights a day.

Lambert Welcomes Two New Airport Commissioners

Lambert-St. Louis International Airport welcomes two new commissioners to the 17-member St. Louis Airport Commission.  June McAllister Fowler, vice president, corporate and public communications for BJC HealthCare, was appointed by St. Louis City Mayor Francis Slay. Samuel P. Jenkins, organization development consultant at Washington University School of Medicine, former Boeing executive, and owner of SPJ Consulting, LLC was appointed to the Commission by St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley.

June Fowler leads all internal, external and public policy communications and community relations efforts on behalf of BJC HealthCare, one of the largest private employers in Missouri. Prior to BJC, Fowler was senior director of communications and community affairs for Mallinckrodt. She began her career as an urban planner with St. Louis County government. Fowler holds a master’s degree in urban affairs from Washington University in St. Louis and a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Missouri Columbia. Fowler currently sits on several community boards including Westminster College, Citizens for Modern Transit, KIPP St. Louis and Health Care Industry Council for the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.

Samuel Jenkins joined Washington University School of Medicine and the newly created human resources applied leadership group in 2012.  He delivers leadership development, coaching, and team building support to faculty and staff.  Jenkins retired from The Boeing Company in 2007 as the vice president of Ethics for Boeing Integrated Defense Systems. Jenkins holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Oklahoma and an MBA from Fontbonne University in St. Louis. He currently serves on the board of directors for Marygrove, a residential treatment center for children, and previously served on several boards of directors, community advisory boards, and most recently the St. Louis County Board for Highways and Traffic.

Both commissioners will serve terms that run through 2017.

Missouri State Museum Opens "Missouri Made" Exhibition at Lambert Gallery

Lambert-St. Louis International Airport is proud to welcome a new exhibition by Missouri State Parks titled “Missouri Made,” now on display through June 30, 2014 at the Lambert Gallery in Terminal 1.   “Missouri Made” highlights the varied and unique collection of Missouri materials, art and artifacts from the Missouri State Museum in Jefferson City, Missouri. The exhibition objects demonstrate a wide-range of artistic skills and creativity.

Exploring five themes in five cases, the objects include raw materials of industry, one-of-a-kind crafts and manufactured goods.  Hand-knit clothing, paper art, a hand-carved cane, and a stained glass sampler are just a few of the artifacts that will be featured in the display cases.  The exhibit explores ideas of individual creativity and mass production, and showcases examples of unexpected beauty found within Missouri’s natural resources.

The Lambert Gallery is located in Terminal 1 in Baggage Claim near the exit for Concourse C. It was selected by the Airport Art Advisory Committee (AAAC) as one of several exhibits on display in 2014 as part of the Airport’s Art and Culture Program. The exhibit is sponsored in part by the St. Louis Regional Arts Commission and the Missouri Arts Council.

The Missouri State Museum, which is part of Missouri State Parks, is located on the first floor of the Missouri State Capitol. For more information, contact the Museum at 573-751-2854. For information on state parks and historic sites, visit mostateparks.com.  Missouri State Parks is a division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

Exclusive Video: Baggage Ride-A-Long on Lambert's New Terminal 1 Inline Baggage System

Want to see the journey of your luggage. Now you can with the debut of Lambert-St. Louis International Airports' new inline baggage system at Terminal 1. We put cameras on luggage and ran it through the new system which includes more than 4,200 linear feet of new conveyors in Terminal 1. Watch how your luggage travels from the airline counters, down two levels, through  through TSA's screening area then onto the airlines for pickup for the outbound flight. 

Check out the ride here.

Terminal 2's new baggage system will go online in April.  

New Baggage System Goes Online; New Copper Roof Construction Beginning

Two major construction projects highlight the final pieces of a top to bottom makeover of Terminal 1 at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport.

Mayor Francis Slay and St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley joined Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge in announcing Tuesday that construction will begin on a $6.7 million project to replace the original copper roof on Lambert’s historic domed vaults. 

“The days are numbered to see the wonderful green patina on top of this architecturally historic building,” said Mayor Francis Slay.  “The new skin will shine of raw copper like it did in the mid-‘50s when the Terminal was built. The roof will slowly transform in color again with time as this Airport serves new generations in this region.”

As that project begins, the Airport is winding down on a budgeted $50.7 million project to overhaul its baggage system in the lowest level of its terminals which will improve efficiencies in screening checked baggage and immediately upgrade the customer experience during the check-in process.

The new inline baggage system in Terminal 1 is now fully operational.  Passengers in Terminal 1 can now hand off their luggage at the ticket counter versus having to transport bags to multiple explosive detection system (EDS) machines that were installed in the ticketing areas after 9/11.  Terminal 1 now operates with three EDS 9800 series machines that are now out of public view.  A new 4,200 linear feet conveyor system transports luggage from every Terminal 1 airline ticket counter, through the new EDS machines, and on to the airlines for pickup to the aircraft.  If bags need further screening, the system automatically diverts them to a resolution room where security officers will do a hands-on inspection to ensure there is no threat.

The inline baggage system for Terminal 2 is set to go live in April. It will operate in the same way and will be equipped with the same EDS machines. That system has a shorter total conveyor run of 2,258 linear feet.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is covering 90 percent of the eligible project costs, or approximately $45.6 million, through grants and funding that were announced in 2010.

"Incorporating state-of-the-art Explosive Detection System technology into an automated system such as we now have at STL not only increases efficiencies and allows for airport growth, but it reduces TSA officer injuries from lifting and moving heavy bags," said Federal Security Director Bill Switzer.   "In fact, most alarms can be resolved in the image resolution room without ever opening a bag."  

“For passengers, it’s a return to the days of being able to actually check-in your bags at the ticket counter which is a convenience we haven’t been able to experience at Lambert in more than 12 years.” said Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “Better yet, the stand-alone screening machines in the ticket areas will no longer be needed, freeing up space and improving the open space of our terminals.”

During the last two years, the baggage system construction was synched with on-going Airport Experience renovations that included major upgrades to Terminal 1 flooring, lighting, ticket counters, restrooms and signage. The $70 million renovation program, which also included improvements to Concourses A and C, wraps up this spring.

The new copper roof is the project that will top off all these recent improvements. The Airport is replacing the 60-year old solid copper roof with copper that’s bonded with a stainless steel core for greater durability. Demolition will begin on the most-eastern dome with demolition of the existing roof and installation of the new roof phased in moving west over the next 10 months. The project calls for installing approximately 102,000 sq. ft. of the copper material to cover the four domes.  After installation, the original light bronze color of the copper will begin to turn dark brown within a year due to exposure to the elements. Over the next 20 years or so, the roof will patina to a soft green.

The roof construction will be led by general contractor Kozeny-Wagner. The major contractors for the new baggage system are C. Rallo/ Hunt Joint Venture, Five Star Airport Alliance and Vanderlande Industries.  

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