St. Louis Lambert Int. Airport [airline/hub/operations/info]

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Incase anyone missed it. A flight with a bomb threat was divereted to STL today.

http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crim ... ea368.html
Heard about that on the news during lunch. Good that the travelers on that flight were taken care of with food and drink here too.

Interesting your notes on the past comments and how it panned out from after final dehubbing part in 2010 to now. Isn't one thing to note is how Southwest jumped here immediately starting a number of routes at that time and how they didn't do that elsewhere in similar situations? Also the pattern it seems they have done was a burst then, then not much adds with the AirTran acquisition other than starting to slot controlled airports when they got slots, then a 2nd burst of new service a couple years ago continuing until now which is in a frequency add part due to craft cruch later this year. Of places dropped from them was either slot issues (SNA), reworked small stations to better tie into network (GRR, which same process caused adds here), short haul cuts (Louisville), and stations they shrunk due to shifting to other places (Albuquerque and Birmingham). Mainly things that wasn't due to weakness here.

Also of note is the economic trends locally during this timeframe. Mainly that there was a 2nd recession locally in the 2011 or so timeframe and the growing importance of the startup community over time which seems to be playing a role in getting new or expanded service lately. And for the strong growth last year. interesting is how that broke down. Since it is more than just connecting Southwest traffic contributing to it. Curious how many was it people starting or ending trips here to/from outside the US. And this summer I did see it was noted rough esitimate of 4.5 percent or so available seat growth across everyone which while not as much as last year a good steady growth.
STLEnginerd wrote:
Tue Feb 07, 2017 10:27 pm
gregl wrote:
Tue Feb 07, 2017 9:01 pm
STLEnginerd wrote:
Tue Feb 07, 2017 7:02 pm
This is why my biggest wish for Lambert is to move the security checks for A B and C up to the top level.
That would be a logisitical nightmare.

The entire lower level cannot be made airside -- baggage claim, where passengers can access items legal in checked bags but not legal for carry on, would be airside.

If the airside area was restricted to the corridor which runs from A to C, you'd still have 4 or 5 exits from the secured area based on how it is laid out today.

Not to mention that there really isn't space on the upper level for a consolidated security checkpoint.

Greg
First I thought it kind of obvious baggage claim couldn't be airside. It's hard to fully layout an idea in a forum post as I am sure you know but I thought that didn't need spelled out.

Regarding the five exits you pointed out I would think that could be reduced to maybe 2. It's a detail that would have to be worked out.

I did specify an addition would probably be required to accommodate a new security checking area. My think was to the west side of the main terminal.

I am truly unfamiliar with what other systems would have to move to accommodate the idea but I am certain they are manageable. Baggage handling, hvac etc. there might not be a ROI case for it but to me it's how the airport should work especially if we ever have a shot at being a major hub again.
Does anyone have a picture of that area before they added the security lines? I always thought something like this idea would be great. We don't have a central mall type area that "major" airports have. I know it's only a fantasy but would it be possible to dig under and add a third level below ground to maintain all the security/baggage claim/other functions?
There is a third level below the baggage claim area. And possibly sub-basements below that in places. If you are airside you can often tell that the concourses are not at ground level. (And never were.) The level below the concourses extends under more or less the entirety of the airport, I believe. There's a variety of service areas down there including baggage handling, crew areas, offices, maintenance, and so forth. (I haven't been down there, but there are hints in old promotional films and even some of the current stuff.) So I suspect you'd really be thinking of a fourth level. And you'd probably be moving a lot of utilities and building systems to do it, as most of those are probably directly underneath the basement levels in tunnels and subbasements. That said . . . most anything is possible with the right amount of money. But that's going to need a lot of zeros. It would probably be more realistic to start thinking about a new terminal on the north side of the field and repurposing the current ones as office space. And that? That doesn't sound terribly realistic to me.

However, yours is a pretty fantasy.
^digging down would be tough I think anything passenger oriented would have to be on the top two levels. I do think there are ways to get there though its really just a matter of making the economics work to justify the expense. Which in short means we need more flights and in particular connecting flights through the main terminal to justify it.
Here's a question for you aviation enthusiasts: Are military aircraft allowed to use afterburners at Lambert?

Some of my neighbors here in U City have been puzzled by loud, low-flying aircraft sounds that almost rattle the windows for several long seconds, and then cut off abruptly. Mind you, this is in U City, several miles from Lambert.
I don't think we could squeeze enough flights onto the field to make digging down make sense. The terminals we have are nearly sufficient for the runway capacity we have, and we've never fully utilized that. (And may never.) In late TWA days when the airport was planning for growth beyond thirty million passengers annually there was talk of a new terminal as the only economically viable option. Even then, when coffers were more flush and the terminal was legitimately crowded, expanding the historic terminal was seen as a challenge. I suspect there would have been enough hue and cry that a way would have been found had TWA weathered the storm. But that was then.

On a side note, it's worth keeping in mind that air travel as we know it now will probably not always be with us. Transportation will change. There will always be something, but in the future it will be different. We may very well be seeing the glory days of conventional airports right now. It remains to be seen how many large new ones will be built before the next big thing happens. In the US it seems likely the number will not be large. Ours will forever remain one of the first and most ground breaking. (Which, by the way, is part of why it's got a few issues.) And we still have it. And with a little luck we will for a long time to come and it will serve our needs adequately for the immediate future.

This is a bit off topic, but here's a close parallel: in 1892 large unified railroad terminals were still a fairly new thing. There were large central terminals in Europe, where railroads were often state run from the outset. There were some quite large stations in England, where space was tight and cities were large and dense. But few major US terminals boasted that kind of size, in part because most US railroads used their own stations and there were lots of competing railroads, and apart from New York, Philadelphia, and Boston US cities generally didn't face the kinds of constraints European cities did in the middle of the nineteenth century. In the last decades of the nineteenth century, with immigration reaching new levels (and anti-immigrant fervor still twenty years from its first great peak around WWI) US cities swelled. Few cities more than St. Louis. And of the new "western" cities, few others were so dense or geographically constrained. Thus it shouldn't be surprising that ours is among the oldest and largest surviving US passenger terminals. But when I say largest, I mean that only in terms of the number of tracks and trains. The "landside" facilities were quite modest. And the "airside" amenities were abysmal by later standards. The lobby is much smaller than newer terminals half the size (as at Kansas City, say.) The ticket counters were in cramped spaces on the lower level, if I understand it correctly. As were most of the waiting areas. The midway was extremely crowded and very very cramped. The trainshed was dark and dingy. Old hands suggest that Lambert never saw the kind of press of bodies that was once in the midway at Union Station. Which makes sense. Lambert never saw local intracity commuter traffic. No reason to fly from Kirkwood to . . . oh, never mind. And more than half the intercity traffic that once flowed over the rails went to the highways, so while the US population grew, I doubt airports have ever handled remotely as many bodies as major rail stations did in their heyday. So by the late forties, just after the wartime floodtide, but before the highway and airline bleeding, there was TRRA talk of how to deal with the cramped conditions at weary old Lam . . . I mean Union Station. It's probably only thanks to the declines of the next thirty years that we still have the place. That doesn't mean I like the declines. But it sure is neat to have such a grand and groundbreaking old terminal preserved for future generations to gawk.

Imperfect as Lambert is, you know, it's really not too bad a place to fly into or out of. And lord oh lord is it historic . . . and pretty. (To my eye, at least.) I will gladly suffer a quieter and more local airport for the sake of keeping the bit of gorgeous that we've got. Honestly, nothing will bring the traffic back anyway, other than plain old organic population growth. But it's open and doing what it's supposed to be doing. Admirably. Unlike Kansas City's Union . . . oh, sorry. Never mind. Wrong building. (But seriously, much like the airport, Kansas City Union Station NEVER filled it's [much smaller] capacity. And the roof always leaked and it was always a big, empty, echoing barn of a place. Lovely. Beautiful. And I'm always glad to see it. But . . . there are parallels. And for me, I'm quite content to have our more cramped, older facilities that were actually much busier and worked well enough and paid for themselves many times over. I'll take our concourses as the price for the terminal. Even if it means we'll never have so many sexy duty free stores. Who buys stuff at those things anyway? (Glances over at gift box from professor.) Oh . . . yeah, never mind. Priorities. I suppose I have different priorities. Must be because I'm a backwards oaf from St. Louis. ;-)
All of STL's social media has changed to St Louis Lambert International Airport, as well as a new logo.


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On the southwest 12:55 LGA-STL. 27 people. I know it's a Tuesday in winter but I wonder how often they run flights like this for very long? The plane came from STL so it isn't like it's was connecting through.
^ The fact that there has been weather issues in the part of the country the past few days and today is valentines day may also depress travel today as well. I could see a number of people schedule around today for business travel and Tuesdays in winter are normally low anyway.

It would be interesting to see how well this route does overall in terms of load but they might get a lot of last minute walk up fares which would help. This could just be a worst case scenario lined up today.
jshank83 wrote:On the southwest 12:55 LGA-STL. 27 people. I know it's a Tuesday in winter but I wonder how often they run flights like this for very long? The plane came from STL so it isn't like it's was connecting through.
That's a rare occasion, however it does happen on SWA's route network. I have flown on many flights out of BWI that are empty. 12:55 is also a really inconvenient departure time. I also believe when it comes to LGA, the majority of STL passengers use Delta or American. I also think overall, EWR is the preferred NY area airport for STL travelers.
Chalupas54 wrote:
Tue Feb 14, 2017 12:08 pm
I also think overall, EWR is the preferred NY area airport for STL travelers.
Have you ever been to Newark?!?
gregl wrote:
Tue Feb 14, 2017 1:39 pm
Chalupas54 wrote:
Tue Feb 14, 2017 12:08 pm
I also think overall, EWR is the preferred NY area airport for STL travelers.
Have you ever been to Newark?!?
Connecting from Europe this summer, hands down worst airport experience I've ever had. Soooooo many pigeons in the tiny, gross concourses.
gregl wrote:
Chalupas54 wrote:
Tue Feb 14, 2017 12:08 pm
I also think overall, EWR is the preferred NY area airport for STL travelers.
Have you ever been to Newark?!?
I have and in fact it's currently my primary Airport. I should clarify, by preference I mean that fares/frequency out of EWR are overall better than LGA. As bad as EWR is, LGA is FAR worse, IMO.


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I flew Delta out and our plane was only 2 seats short of full, but it was a CRJ 700 so much smaller and the day after the storm big storm out there. It also was a Friday at 4 so I am sure that helped.

Someone else in the line today said they were on this flight (12:55 flight) last week and it had about the same amount of people. Maybe the flight out from STL has more people on making the connection to LGA in STL or something? The Southwest gates at LGA are pretty horrible. I would have been open to flying out of Newark instead but they only had a morning and night flight. We wanted to take Southwest and take an afternoon flight. I would be curious if moving the afternoon flight to Newark instead of LGA would make a difference. The construction at LGA is horrible. I also wonder if people are avoiding it when possible.

Sidenote: I overheard one of the flight attendants saying that Dallas' new expansion was supposed to take 20 years to fully grow into and they already are out of room. She mentioned that is one of the reasons why STL is getting more flights and they are adding the new gates.
Also, I meant to comment on the new logo. It was up on all the electronic signs today. I still like the old one better. They could have just changed the name in the old logo in my opinion but I guess the STL stands out in this one.

I do like the new website better. The maps are different but good. I wish they would have left the nonstop map up though. Besides that I like it better than the old site. The parking is right there front and center and easy to find as well as flight info and everything else.
The website seems simple enough. I miss the old history page, though. That's . . . less obvious, if it's still there. But yes, the website is mostly fine. Easy to navigate. And using Google maps is probably the way to go. (Though there is at least one minor error. Still shows the hall between B and C as open. And while B is greyed out there are numbered B gates, as though they are active.) Incidentally, the old terminal map is still there as a PDF. Not quite sure what you mean by the "nonstop map."

The new logo is one more generic logo. It could be for Standard Technical Logos LLC just as fittingly as St. Louis in general or Lambert in particular. It doesn't seem to say St. Louis as effectively as the old one did. It's less distinctive. . The letters are big and bold and all that, but there's nothing that says St. Louis quite as well as the arch. There's a nod in that direction, sort of, but it's too subtle. And there's nothing about the new logo that seems to speak to flight. I don't expect it will last much more than maybe ten years. It's a minor point, but it's one more "why change what ain't broke" kind of question. Meh.
symphonicpoet wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:01 am
The website seems simple enough. I miss the old history page, though. That's . . . less obvious, if it's still there. But yes, the website is mostly fine. Easy to navigate. And using Google maps is probably the way to go. (Though there is at least one minor error. Still shows the hall between B and C as open. And while B is greyed out there are numbered B gates, as though they are active.) Incidentally, the old terminal map is still there as a PDF. Not quite sure what you mean by the "nonstop map."

The new logo is one more generic logo. It could be for Standard Technical Logos LLC just as fittingly as St. Louis in general or Lambert in particular. It doesn't seem to say St. Louis as effectively as the old one did. It's less distinctive. . The letters are big and bold and all that, but there's nothing that says St. Louis quite as well as the arch. There's a nod in that direction, sort of, but it's too subtle. And there's nothing about the new logo that seems to speak to flight. I don't expect it will last much more than maybe ten years. It's a minor point, but it's one more "why change what ain't broke" kind of question. Meh.
The history page is under the About Us section: http://flystl.com/about-us/history

-RBB
symphonicpoet wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:01 am
Not quite sure what you mean by the "nonstop map."
When you clicked what now says nonstop service there used to be a map showing all the places that had nonstop service so you easily could see each destination on a map. Now they just list them out in a list (which they also did before). A map is just easier and quicker to see where they have flights. For example, lets say I needed to go to Ponca City, OK, I could just take a quick look at the map and see there are direct flights to Wichita, Tulsa, and Oklahoma City. I wouldn't have to go through and list and try to think of every close airport to check.

Here is Cleveland's map, for an example.

http://www.clevelandairport.com/flight- ... cities-old
The new logo is generic enough that I thought they had stolen an old stltoday logo. Feels like they need to incorporate a plane into it or something.
^rbb,

Glad to see it's still there. It seems they might even have rewritten it somewhat for the better. Thought I looked under about us, but maybe I missed it.

^jshank83,

Ah, gotcha. Makes sense. Yeah, that's probably an element worth adding back in.
jshank83 wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2017 9:37 am
symphonicpoet wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:01 am
Not quite sure what you mean by the "nonstop map."
When you clicked what now says nonstop service there used to be a map showing all the places that had nonstop service so you easily could see each destination on a map. Now they just list them out in a list (which they also did before). A map is just easier and quicker to see where they have flights. For example, lets say I needed to go to Ponca City, OK, I could just take a quick look at the map and see there are direct flights to Wichita, Tulsa, and Oklahoma City. I wouldn't have to go through and list and try to think of every close airport to check.

Here is Cleveland's map, for an example.

http://www.clevelandairport.com/flight- ... cities-old
You mean something like this?

Image

Oddly enough it's on their business site, flystlbiz.com: link

Agree, that would be a good thing to include on their non-stop service page.

EDIT: Hmm, it looks like the data on the business site is at least two years out-of-date. Their passenger statistics numbers, for example, are as of 2014.

-RBB
^ yes that is what I mean and yes that is out of date. To be fair even the one on the old flystl site was out of date.
Well this seems random. I didn't know shipping livestock overseas was a thing.

St. Louis Lambert International Airport is looking at a new source of air cargo — livestock.

http://www.stltoday.com/business/local/ ... 33efe.html

It also talks about them being out of hanger space and updates the new things in Concourse E a little bit.

It also mentions that 58% of the passanger growth last year was connecting passangers.
New logo sucks. We need a petition!

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