The first NBAA business aviation regional forum in 2012 was held in New Orleans on Thursday, marking “a triumphant return to the Crescent City” six years after Hurricane Katrina forced the association to move its annual convention from the flood-damaged region. “NBAA is pleased with the results of the New Orleans forum,” said NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen.
Geography of the United States
Shell has announced three new additions to its FBO network. Greenbrier Valley Airport in Lewisburg, W.Va., and Summit Aviation in Middleton, Del., both former Exxon customers, along with Richmond Jet Center in New Bern, N.C. have joined the more than 400 FBOs in the provider’s network.
Ann Arbor, Mich.-based Avfuel has added Hoosier Aviation (previously the Terre Haute Air Center) located at Indiana’s Terre Haute International Airport/Hulman Field, and the TMA Group, the sole provider at Cambridge Municipal Airport in Cambridge, Nebraska as branded dealers.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation has awarded more than $2 million in state funds to Macon County Airport (1A5) in Franklin. The funds will be used to rebuild the aircraft parking ramp. Richard Walls, the state’s aviation director, said the improvement–along with a recently completed runway extension–will help serve the airport’s future needs. According to state accounting, the airport, which sees approximately 25 operations a day, has a total impact of nearly $8 million a year and supports more than 120 jobs.
Asserting that growth is limited by its being part of a governmental agency, the Tupelo Airport Authority has issued a request for proposals from private operators to manage Tupelo Aviation Unlimited, the airport-owned FBO at the Mississippi airport. Once the bid process closes on February 10, the airport authority will establish a selection committee to review proposals and ensure that Tupelo chooses the best candidate. The length of the management contract is five years, by the end of which the authority’s goal is to be completely out of the FBO business.
Savoy, Ill.-based Flightstar has purchased the assets of Bloomington Avionics. Under the terms of the agreement the staff at Bloomington Avionics, as well as its assets and services, will transfer to Flightstar’s FBO facility at Champaign-Urbana’s University of Illinois-Willard Airport. Bloomington Avionics operated for more than 30 years at Central Illinois Regional Airport in Bloomington, Ill., as an FAA Class I and II avionics repair station serving owners of high-performance single- and twin-engine aircraft.
Hawker Beechcraft received type certification for the Hawker 900XP midsize business jet from the Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC) Aviation Registry in Russia, the Wichita-based aircraft manufacturer announced yesterday. The twinjet can reach any point in Europe from Moscow or St. Petersburg, according to Hawker Beechcraft. With the Russian approval, the Hawker 900XP has obtained type certification from more than 50 countries.
Cirrus restructured more than $13 million worth of loan and lease obligations related to its Grand Forks, N.D. production facility with that city’s growth fund. Cirrus employs approximately 90 people in Grand Forks who make composite component parts for its SR piston aircraft that are then shipped to the company’s assembly line in Duluth, Minn. Since 1996, Grand Forks has issued various bonds and loans in support of these activities, including construction of more than 160,000 sq ft of facilities.
Wichita’s future as an aircraft manufacturing hub has appeared less than rosy of late, but the outlook took a turn for the better with news today that Bombardier plans further expansion of its Learjet facilities there. This morning, Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback and Bombardier Business Aircraft president Steve Ridolfi announced the expansion of the company’s flight-test center in Wichita, in addition to establishing a center of excellence for engineering and information technology, adding new facilities for paint and production flight-testing and building a new aircraft delivery center in the self-appointed Air Capital of the World.
In response to recent confusion regarding the status of the Cleveland Jet Center (CJC) at Cleveland Cuyahoga County Airport, AIN learned that the facility was placed into court-ordered receivership late last month as a result of default proceedings on a multimillion-dollar loan by owner Canyon Properties. Canyon is run by Scott Beale, the chairman and CEO of Michigan-based Aerodynamics (ADI), and his wife, Jennifer. At a hearing last Thursday, a Cuyahoga County court ruled that CJC will remain in the hands of the receiver until the dispute is settled or the property is sold.
The City of Pompano Beach is extending the main runway at Pompano Beach Airpark by 500 feet. Upon completion early this year, Runway 15-33 at the Fort Lauderdale area airport will be 4,918 feet long, allowing for easier takeoffs and landings and affording an increased level of safety.
The present expansion is somewhat ironic. The city–in an attempt to emphasize the former military training base’s GA-only usage–shortened 15-33 from its original length of 5,000 feet to its current length of 4,420 feet in 1971.