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STL Facelift Continues Plus Hopes For London N/s?  
User currently offlineMrSTL From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 468 posts, RR: 1
Posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 2611 times:

Below is an excerpt of a larger article in the today's St. Louis Post Dispatch I have cut and paste the article to the pertinent content. Why would Kevin as a new director set an expectation he couldn't fulfill?? Let's hope he succeeds!!

LAMBERT COSMETICS: One of the nation's shabbiest airports has been looking up, with a lot of paint, power washing and - gasp - attention to detail.

Former director Leonard Griggs' administration seemed preoccupied with completing a new runway, while the experience of travelers using Lambert Field went steadily downward.

New director Kevin Dolliole got a lot of suggestions from an advisory team led by former Sara Lee executive Barry Beracha. He's also been taking notes.

"I notice some hot and cold spots in the terminal," he says, and wants to improve heating and cooling systems. He has ordered improved lighting at security checkpoints and fresh paint on dark ceiling patches. A contract has been awarded for new multicolor monitors announcing arrivals and departures, and they will be in better locations.

Wolfgang Puck's Express opened last week, the latest in a series of new vendors. A third international gate opened, a seeming luxury at an airport with regular service to two international destinations: Toronto and Cancun. But Dolliole hopes to negotiate nonstop service to London.

21 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineLambertMan From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 2070 posts, RR: 36
Reply 1, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 2574 times:

I'm glad that we have an airport director that actually takes an active interest in the looks of the airports. I think Griggs could have cared less.

The London flight, realistically, could only exist on a seasonal basis. The winter loads were absolute poop, and so was the cargo. There would have to be some sort of community package offered to get either BA or AA to try it again.

Could you post the link, STL?


User currently offlineSTLUAL747 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 167 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 2572 times:

It is good to hear how much the airport is improving. However, even though the possible insertion of a LGW flight (I would assume) sounds promising I definitely would not hold my breath. Now coming from the airport directors mouth gives a little more hope for it but I still don't know. Only time will tell.

My  twocents 

Josh



Lonely in Deserted St. Louis.
User currently offlineMrSTL From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 468 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 2555 times:

Here's the link, although I posted everything written about Lambert.
http://domino.stltoday.com/stltoday/...=2%2C%22LAmbert%22+AND+%22Field%22


User currently offlineSTLGph From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 9296 posts, RR: 25
Reply 4, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 2522 times:

Quoting MrSTL (Thread starter):
Why would Kevin as a new director set an expectation he couldn't fulfill??

To blow smoke up the ass of the people that hired him and make it appear that things are getting better.

AA pulls mainline to Baltimore, and is expected to pull more mainline on other routes. AA also moves out of the B Concourse after he spents $130,000 to put in new carpet.

UAL keeps pulling more mainline to Denver and Chicago. Service to New Orleans is gone, which equals ~$600,000ish a year lost in revenue.



Eternal darkness we all should dread. It's hard to party when you're dead.
User currently offlineBHMNONREV From Australia, joined Aug 2003, 1368 posts, RR: 4
Reply 5, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 2499 times:

Quoting STLGph (Reply 4):
To blow smoke up the ass of the people that hired him and make it appear that things are getting better.

He's still very new on the job and thus far he has done more than Griggs did for at least 10-15 years prior. He will have to suffer for the sins of the departed Colonel and certainly has his work cut out for himself, no question. I will give him the benefit of the doubt for a while, he came to St. Louis highly recommended.

Quoting STLGph (Reply 4):
AA pulls mainline to Baltimore, and is expected to pull more mainline on other routes. AA also moves out of the B Concourse after he spents $130,000 to put in new carpet.

UAL keeps pulling more mainline to Denver and Chicago. Service to New Orleans is gone, which equals ~$600,000ish a year lost in revenue.

Certainly not his fault, and STL finds themselves in the same position as other comparatively sized airports that are losing mainline service in favor of RJ's (PIT, CLE)

Quoting MrSTL (Thread starter):
New director Kevin Dolliole got a lot of suggestions from an advisory team led by former Sara Lee executive Barry Beracha. He's also been taking notes.

Would Griggs in all of his arrogance have even remotely considered taking this approach. Not likely..

Quoting LambertMan (Reply 1):
The London flight, realistically, could only exist on a seasonal basis. The winter loads were absolute poop, and so was the cargo. There would have to be some sort of community package offered to get either BA or AA to try it again.

I agree. It would take something along the lines of what GSK offers to AA for the RDU-LGW service, or at least some sort of guarantee from local leaders. A 757 would be the ideal airplane for a STL-LGW run, but unless AA can figure out a way to squeeze another 500-1000 miles out of its fuel tanks, it won't happen. And with BA standardizing its' North Atlantic service with the 777, there is no way on this earth we could even come close to filling one of those birds. So if Mr. Dolliole has an ace up his sleeve, I would like to see it....


User currently offlineSTLGph From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 9296 posts, RR: 25
Reply 6, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 2464 times:

Quoting BHMNONREV (Reply 5):
Certainly not his fault, and STL finds themselves in the same position as other comparatively sized airports that are losing mainline service in favor of RJ's (PIT, CLE)

Not even close. Cleveland and Pittsburgh and are not undertaking projects that require annual repayments of over $90 million per year to refrain from entering "junk status." Nor do you hear about these airports being in danger of running into bankruptcy in a few years. These two airports have facilities that don't need renovation or cosmetic upgrades, and they already have nice income from retail and restaurant concessions. Dolliole realizes this and thus why you see these additions, and this is where he's getting his money for new plants and lights.

My biggest complaint with him is that C/D Security Gates still house the world's slowest Cinnabon. I would applaud him knocking all of that out and starting over.



Eternal darkness we all should dread. It's hard to party when you're dead.
User currently offlineStl1326 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 496 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 2353 times:

Quoting STLGph (Reply 4):
AA pulls mainline to Baltimore, and is expected to pull more mainline on other routes. AA also moves out of the B Concourse after he spents $130,000 to put in new carpet.

This is the first mainline route they have pulled in at least two years. The last was PHX, if anything they have added mainline flights to SAT, TUL, SAN, and DFW and just announced plans to add seasonal PVR. If they were going to pull more mainline flights I think they would have done that by now. Everyone still thinks they are going to leave STL. They still have a large presence here. I think the new director is doing a good job of trying to fix up the airport. I know when I went through the C concourse it looked very nice compared to my last time through there four years ago.


User currently offlineLambertMan From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 2070 posts, RR: 36
Reply 8, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 2338 times:

I'm not overly concerned that American will pull more mainline flights. It wouldn't surprise me to see them pull out of TPA or MCO (WN factor), but for the most part I don't buy them slashing LGA, BOS, DCA, LAX etc. I thought it over and there are about 8 frivelous frequencies, leaving us at around 50 mainline. If anything, I wouldn't be surprised to see them add a morning MD80 to JAX. I know that sounds weird, but my friend does it all the time and he says its absolutely loaded with Anheuser Busch employees. American did it for SBC on the SAT route, maybe it'll do the same on JAX.

Of course, this is speculating before WN makes any moves. With the costs going up at the airport, WN could pull down a few of the odd routes that they have in and out of STL. Who knows, maybe American would see more opportunity in STL if WN were to scale back (which seems imminent).


User currently offlineBHMNONREV From Australia, joined Aug 2003, 1368 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 2207 times:

Quoting LambertMan (Reply 8):
Of course, this is speculating before WN makes any moves. With the costs going up at the airport, WN could pull down a few of the odd routes that they have in and out of STL. Who knows, maybe American would see more opportunity in STL if WN were to scale back (which seems imminent).

This would be a real shame. The East Terminal now as it is sits at about 50% capacity, and any further reduction would literally turn it into a ghost town. The 12 gates there are grossly underutilized.

Does WN own this building outright, or do they lease from the city/airport authority. It seems you could put a couple of airlines from "A" down there and start some minor renovations to "A", a few gates at a time.


User currently offlineTWFirst From Vatican City, joined Apr 2000, 6346 posts, RR: 52
Reply 10, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 2172 times:

Quoting STLGph (Reply 6):
These two airports have facilities that don't need renovation or cosmetic upgrades, and they already have nice income from retail and restaurant concessions

Have you been to CLE?



An unexamined life isn't worth living.
User currently offlineAtrude777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 5692 posts, RR: 52
Reply 11, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 2113 times:

Quoting BHMNONREV (Reply 9):
Does WN own this building outright, or do they lease from the city/airport authority. It seems you could put a couple of airlines from "A" down there and start some minor renovations to "A", a few gates at a time.

WN paid for the new East Terminal so I am guessing they own it.

Alex



Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
User currently offlineN77014 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 2103 times:

Quoting STLUAL747 (Reply 2):
It is good to hear how much the airport is improving. However, even though the possible insertion of a LGW flight (I would assume) sounds promising I definitely would not hold my breath. Now coming from the airport directors mouth gives a little more hope for it but I still don't know. Only time will tell.

It the greater scheme of things, it is not so much an airport issue, but an economic issue. STL is not an energy center, financial center, silicon valley, or a major port. In short, the current roster of destinations is indicative of the state of the current economy there.


User currently offlineLambertMan From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 2070 posts, RR: 36
Reply 13, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 2079 times:

Quoting Atrude777 (Reply 11):
WN paid for the new East Terminal so I am guessing they own it.

I think thats the case. Now, when I think about it, there are really too many intangibles to factor in to make a really good guess about what WN will do next in St. Louis. Sure, the costs are going up, but they already have quite a bit invested in the St. Louis operation, assuming they own the East terminal. Add in the fact that as soon as AA cut their flights in 03, WN had a 4% passenger increase without even adding any flights (FLL and LAX not factored in). So all indications point to St. Louis doing better than it did in the late 90's, early 2000's when it was in the doghouse.

Quoting N77014 (Reply 12):
It the greater scheme of things, it is not so much an airport issue, but an economic issue. STL is not an energy center, financial center, silicon valley, or a major port. In short, the current roster of destinations is indicative of the state of the current economy there.

A hub also helps. Wink

Above all else, I hope for improvements in the airport all the way around. The dim lights, the purple carpeting, the lack of restaurants, the long lines, and the overall bad feeling of the place are more to be worried about than getting a flight to London.


User currently offlineBHMNONREV From Australia, joined Aug 2003, 1368 posts, RR: 4
Reply 14, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 2070 times:

Quoting Atrude777 (Reply 11):
WN paid for the new East Terminal so I am guessing they own it.

I suspected they did build it themselves, but was not sure. I wonder if they would have any interest in sub-leasing some of the unused gates to other carriers? Might give them some increased revenue to offset the rising costs of operating at Lambert. Just a thought...

I would guess if that scenario were possible, Dolliole and Co. would not be thrilled at losing some of their airline rental fees. My guess there is something written that would prohibit other airlines from using WN gates at the East Terminal.

Quoting N77014 (Reply 12):
In short, the current roster of destinations is indicative of the state of the current economy there.

I agree with this statement. At this point in time Lambert is adequately served to most major business and tourist destinations within North America, and I can't see the demand for any service to Europe on a daily basis, unless AA/BA can snag some lucrative local cargo/passenger contracts to make such a route viable...


User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 15, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 2052 times:

When TW (then AA) flew the STL-LGW route, was there an reasonable amount of O&D traffic or did the flight suvive on connections with most pax originating west of St Louis? Could AA possible make a once per day STL-LGW flight with a 763 work either on a seaonal or year round basis? I know that AA just signed a new agreement giving it increased access to the UK, but LHR and LGW are of course excluded - does AA even a slot available to launch such a service if it were interested?

Also, didnt BCAL fly STL-LGW a very long time ago (with 707s and the DC10s)? Of course, that was long ago before most US carriers reorganized their route systems around hubs and point to point flying was more usual.


User currently offlineBHMNONREV From Australia, joined Aug 2003, 1368 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 2035 times:

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 15):
When TW (then AA) flew the STL-LGW route, was there an reasonable amount of O&D traffic or did the flight suvive on connections with most pax originating west of St Louis?

O&D was okay, not great, but local premium traffic was horrible, with probably 80-90% of premium seats filled by upgrades or non-revs. TW had several lucrative cargo deals with UK firms, which kept the bellies relatively full on a daily basis. Generally, loads were good, but yields were fair to sometimes poor.

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 15):
Could AA possible make a once per day STL-LGW flight with a 763 work either on a seaonal or year round basis? I know that AA just signed a new agreement giving it increased access to the UK, but LHR and LGW are of course excluded - does AA even a slot available to launch such a service if it were interested?

I believe they could make it work on a seasonal basis, with service 4-5 times per week. But with AA short on 767-300 airframes I don't know where they would get them to operate this flight. They have the slots available to run STL-LGW, but they shifted it to DFW-LGW, so I suppose AA feels that the flight can make more money as opposed to STL.

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 15):
Also, didnt BCAL fly STL-LGW a very long time ago (with 707s and the DC10s)? Of course, that was long ago before most US carriers reorganized their route systems around hubs and point to point flying was more usual.

Yes they did, but as you would suspect, there was little demand and it did not last very long. If they had stuck with the 707 as opposed to bringing in the DC-10 it may have lasted longer, who knows but the DC-10 had way too many seats to fill and it went belly up shortly thereafter. The other three cities that got BCal service around the same time (ATL, DFW, IAH) flourished, and when BA bought out BCal those three continued with BA metal and are still being served today...


User currently offlineN77014 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 2020 times:

Quoting BHMNONREV (Reply 16):
Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 15):
Could AA possible make a once per day STL-LGW flight with a 763 work either on a seaonal or year round basis? I know that AA just signed a new agreement giving it increased access to the UK, but LHR and LGW are of course excluded - does AA even a slot available to launch such a service if it were interested?

I believe they could make it work on a seasonal basis, with service 4-5 times per week. But with AA short on 767-300 airframes I don't know where they would get them to operate this flight. They have the slots available to run STL-LGW, but they shifted it to DFW-LGW, so I suppose AA feels that the flight can make more money as opposed to STL.

Even if the aircraft were available, the revenue to be made STL-LGW versus an additional deep South America route ex MIA is night and day.


User currently offlineSTLGph From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 9296 posts, RR: 25
Reply 18, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 2021 times:

Quoting TWFirst (Reply 10):

Have you been to CLE?

yes, many times.

Quoting Stl1326 (Reply 7):
This is the first mainline route they have pulled in at least two years. The last was PHX, if anything they have added mainline flights to SAT, TUL, SAN, and DFW

DFW, it's a hub
SAT, SBC basically funds it
TUL, maitenance
SAN, large military traffic route

Quoting N77014 (Reply 12):
It the greater scheme of things, it is not so much an airport issue, but an economic issue. STL is not an energy center, financial center, silicon valley, or a major port. In short, the current roster of destinations is indicative of the state of the current economy there.

yes, but the airport's issues aren't helping economics much, either.



Eternal darkness we all should dread. It's hard to party when you're dead.
User currently offlineAtrude777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 5692 posts, RR: 52
Reply 19, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1960 times:

Quoting BHMNONREV (Reply 14):

I suspected they did build it themselves, but was not sure. I wonder if they would have any interest in sub-leasing some of the unused gates to other carriers? Might give them some increased revenue to offset the rising costs of operating at Lambert. Just a thought...

In the East Terminal, WN owns 12 gates, they are currently using 10 of them. It is possible WN may want to lease the gates for some airlines, however the gate area and such are all WN make shift. WN SIngs, gates, chairs, everything there says Southwest Airlines.

I checked and Southwest does own all the gates in the E Terminal, and the Terminal itself. They paid 97.5 Million dollars torwards the Terminal if I am reading the article correctly.

Here is an article about it.
http://southwest.com/about_swa/press/prindex.html

Alex



Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
User currently offlineLuv2fly From United States of America, joined May 2003, 12090 posts, RR: 49
Reply 20, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 1964 times:

Quoting TWFirst (Reply 10):
Have you been to CLE?

Please CLE could be better, though it still is ahead of STL!



You can cut the irony with a knife
User currently offlineSTLGph From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 9296 posts, RR: 25
Reply 21, posted (8 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1831 times:

Quoting Stl1326 (Reply 7):
This is the first mainline route they have pulled in at least two years.

another note-

this is also the time when the new operating rates and gate leases have been negotiated and prices are going up.

Quoting LambertMan (Reply 8):
but for the most part I don't buy them slashing LGA, BOS, DCA, LAX etc.

if Chautauqua and Trans States show interest in doing the work for them, look for mainline to disappear along these routes in the next year or two.

there are mumbles in Ladue about Trans States looking into investment and development of its own low cost carrier service. AA, like Nordstrom at West County Mall, wants out, but is stuck. the goal would be to slowly take over operations from STL from AA and Chautauqua, starting with embraer's, and then working up from there.

if this doesn't come to fruitation, Trans States will have some extra RJ's they've brought on they'd love to place into service and would definitely be tossing the notion to AA to let them take over responsibility of more routes from STL.



Eternal darkness we all should dread. It's hard to party when you're dead.
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