The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency can now process non-U.S. citizen general aviation flight arrivals as well as those for U.S. citizens at New York Long Island MacArthur Airport. Arrivals are processed through the agency’s newly renovated facility at the airport’s main terminal between Gates B14 and B15. In operation from 9 a.m. until 11 p.m. seven days a week, the facility can clear a maximum combined 20 passengers and crew per general aviation flight.
Airports, Heliports and FBOs
New developments at airports and heliports, including regulations and noise issues; legal disputes; openings, acquisitions and mergers of FBOs; AIN’s Annual FBO Survey Reports; and news, issues and concerns regarding fuel cards, fuel prices and alternative fuels.
The city of Cleveland, Tenn., has notified the FAA that it intends to close Cleveland Hardwick Field Airport (HDI) on March 14, starting a public comment period. The airport has a single 3,300-foot runway that it is unable to expand because of surrounding residences. As a replacement, the city developed the Cleveland Regional Jetport (RZR) approximately five miles away with a 5,500-foot runway. All flight operations and tenants, including the Crystal Air FBO, relocated there when it opened last year.
Last month Million Air occupied its new headquarters facility at Houston Hobby Airport. Under construction for approximately a year, the 27,000-sq-foot FBO offers the latest amenities, including the “Million Air Sky Lounge,” an upstairs 800-sq-ft event room with a folding glass curtain wall that opens onto a 753-sq-foot balcony overlooking the airport and ramp. The room features a kitchen area with ice machine, refrigerators and bar area for special events. Six tenant offices have glass doors that open to the lounge, while another four offices are located downstairs.
Since the opening of the first of three phases in planned expansion of its FBO at Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport last year, Sheltair reports the $25 million complex is home to more than 30 business jets and five new operators, while six existing aviation businesses there have expanded their operations. The Florida-based company also welcomed a full simulator flight training facility to its campus.
The World Economic Forum, held annually in Davos, Switzerland, traditionally attracts a large number of business aircraft, and this year was no exception, with hundreds of government and business leaders heading to the area. Jet Aviation Zurich this year handled 726 movements and nearly 2,000 passengers during the course of the conference (January 22 to 25), while tallying fuel sales of more than 1.1 million liters (290,000 gallons). The FBO noted larger aircraft carrying more passengers this year.
After more than a year of construction, Galaxy FBO is in full operation at its new facility at Lone Star Executive Airport in Conroe, Texas. Galaxy FBO had been providing service at the location since 2006. In 2012 Black Forest Ventures purchased the company and undertook construction of the new complex. The terminal occupies the entire 17,000-sq-ft first floor of a three-story building and includes lounges for passengers and crews, and an A/V-equipped conference room that can seat 100 people.
BBA Aviation’s flight support division, consisting of international FBO chain Signature Flight Support and commercial aircraft handler ASIG, saw revenues last year climb by 4 percent over 2012, to $1.375 billion, or 62 percent of the parent company’s overall revenue, according to 2013 financial results released yesterday. At more than $968 million, Signature’s revenues accounted for 70 percent of that amount, a 2-percent increase over its 2012 performance.
Signature Flight Support acquired the FBO assets of the Jets facility at London Biggin Hill Airport last week. Jets will continue to operate its core business of aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul, while Signature will own and operate the FBO assets.
In a follow up to the December announcement that it will purchase the Galaxy Aviation chain of FBOs, Macquarie Infrastructure subsidiary Atlantic Aviation will also acquire the related Boca Aviation facility, which was not included in the original transaction because of the location’s separate ownership considerations.
On Friday, Signature Flight Support broke ground on its 240,000-sq-ft, $82 million FBO complex at Norman Y. Mineta San José International Airport in California. When completed late next year, the new Signature San José facility will serve the general aviation needs of individuals and companies in Silicon Valley. Blue City Holdings, the private aviation arm of Google’s founders, is one of the anchor tenants.
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