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History Willow Run YIP  
User currently offlineCLEpirate From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 78 posts, RR: 0
Posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 5056 times:

On many West to East Approaches to CLE the flight path is just south of YIP and DTW. Very interestd to learn more about YIP. See very clearly two side by side runways. I know that USAJET has operations at YIP and that ZANTOP once had major operations there as well. Interested in learning more about past and present operations.

thanks

32 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineKELPkid From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 6428 posts, RR: 3
Reply 1, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 5047 times:

Much of the traffic there centers around the automotive industry...   


Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
User currently offlinenwafan20 From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 157 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 5005 times:

Well, where to start? I guess I will start with the airport itself. There are 4 runways, 5L/23R, 5R/23L, 9/27, and 14/32. The longest is 5R/23L at just over 7,500 feet. There are plans to expand a runway in order to accommodate Kalitta 747's as currently they can only fly out of YIP with low fuel and fly over to DTW to fill up. Currently the airport's main tenants are USA Jet, Kalitta, Acitve Aero Cargo, Ameristar, and National Airlines (formerly Murray Air). Kalitta maintains a sizable operation there seeing as its their home, with both cargo and passenger planes there. USA Jet does the same as well.

YIP was initially built by Ford to produce the B-24 bombers. The site of the factory still exists but is now (ironically) a GM plant. After WWII the airport became the main commercial airport (previously Detroit City Airport). The federal government chose to get rid of YIP, and sold it to the University of Michigan for $1. UofM ran the airport until 1977 when it sold the airport to the county for $1 as well. The airport started to bleed traffic to DTW soon after the sale to UofM, and by 1968 the terminal was vacant.

Probably the best part of the airport is the Yankee Air Museum. It has/had many great artifacts and still has flyable (and flying) B-17, B-25, and C-47. Unfortunately, in 2004 there was a major fire that burnt down the hangar and basically these 3 airplanes were the only thing saved. Things destroyed include the original North American OV-10A Bronco, a Waco CG-4A, Republic F-105, Aero L-39, a Link Trainer, and all their spares and toolings, as well as their mechanical library. The museum is slowly rebuilding, and are working on building a DC-9 simulator (YES!!) as well as their main goal of aquiring a B-24 that was built at the YIP plant, and many other projects. I hope i'm not overstepping my bounds here, but I urge you to donate to help rebuild this great museum at their website http://www.yankeeairmuseum.org/



Long live the Red Tail! | WMU Flight Science major
User currently offlinedtw9 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1174 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 5006 times:

Here's a link to the war years


http://public.fotki.com/Kos/members_...iilow_run_bomber/?cmd=fs_slideshow


User currently offlineCLEpirate From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 78 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 4944 times:

thanks for the feedack. Notice that c310 is a favorite into YIP . What is drivig thistraffic? Also re the need to expand... what ruway will be expanded to accomodate the 747?

User currently offlineWA707atMSP From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 2264 posts, RR: 8
Reply 5, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 4780 times:

Some more information:

As mentioned by others, Willow Run opened in 1942, to manufacture B-24 bombers.

The USA's first rural freeway, the Detroit Industrial Expressway (today known as I-94) opened the next year, to quickly get workers from inner city Detroit to Ford's Rouge factory in Dearborn, Wayne Major Airport (DTW, which had a couple of smaller aircraft factories at the time), and YIP.

YIP became Detroit's primary airline airport in 1946, but only after heated disagreements between AA and the other airlines serving Detroit. At that time, DET was Detroit's main airport, but it had a short runway that could accomodate nothing larger than a DC-3, and was located in close proximity to a 400 foot high natural storage tank. When World War II ended, no decision had been made on where to locate a new airport to replace DET. AA wanted to move flights temporarily to DTW, pending a final decision on where Detroit's new airport would be. The other airlines serving Detroit wanted to move to YIP, which at that time had more modern facilities, and could be converted to civilian use more quickly. AA was concerned that YIP was too far from downtown Detroit (it was, at that time, the most isolated airport in the country - 12 miles further from Detroit than DTW), but the other airlines won out. AA's fears about YIP's isolation were confirmed - traffic dropped 22% after flights moved from DET to YIP.

Throughout the late 1940s and early 1950s, flights to YIP were operated out of a "temporary" terminal, while discussions continued over where to build a permanent airport for Detroit. One proposed location was in the then-rural northeast Detroit suburb of Warren, on the site where General Motors' styling studio and research laboratories are now. Another location would have been on a man made island in Lake St. Clair. The most far fetched proposal would have been to convert YQG to joint US / Canadian use, and build a second span of the Ambassador Bridge, and a customs road, through Windsor to bring US domestic passengers to / from the "US Domestic" terminal at YQG without going through Canadian customs.

As the airport controversy raged on, Wayne County (the owner of DTW) gradually upgraded DTW, with a new control tower (now part of the L C Smith Terminal) and customs facilities. When Pan Am began serving Detroit in 1954, they chose to use DTW rather than YIP. When BOAC initiated service at Detroit two years later, they also chose DTW.

By the mid 1950s, no decision had been made about a "permanent" airport for Detroit. AA (then the dominant airline at Detroit) decided they could not wait any longer, and signed a 30 year lease for facilities at DTW. AA and Allegheny moved from YIP to DTW in Dec 1958. Delta and Northwest followed in April, 1959.

The remaining airlines at YIP were not able to move to DTW, because DTW's terminal was too small to accomodate them. Predictably, expanded terminal facilities took a LONG time to be completed. In April, 1966, Eastern and TWA moved from YIP to DTW after the L C Smith terminal had been expanded, and Concourses C and D constructed. The remaining four airlines at YIP (United, Mohawk, Lake Central, and North Central) finally moved in the fall of 1966, after the E and F concourses, and the Davey Terminal, were completed.



Seaholm Maples are #1!
User currently offlineisitsafenow From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4984 posts, RR: 23
Reply 6, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 4654 times:

Quoting WA707atMSP (Reply 5):
In April, 1966, Eastern and TWA moved from YIP to DTW after the L C Smith terminal had been expanded

According to my flight log, I was on an EA-727-100 CLE-YIP in early April of 1966. The move must of been a couple of weeks after. I do remember the flight. It was my first on a 727...clear,sunny day and we landed toward the Southwest.
safe



If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
User currently offlineTb727 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1649 posts, RR: 9
Reply 7, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 4610 times:

Quoting CLEpirate (Reply 4):
thanks for the feedack. Notice that c310 is a favorite into YIP . What is drivig thistraffic? Also re the need to expand... what ruway will be expanded to accomodate the 747?

The 310's are check runners for the banks. There are also a lot of Twin Commanders that do it as well and YIP seems to be a bit of a hub. I learned to fly here at YIP and have been based here ever since flying a variety of small jets and now the 3 holer. Runway 27, formerly 27R, is going to be expanded to about 9000' to accommodate heavier flights. Connie Kalitta and Preston Murray have been trying for years to get a longer runway and it sounds like it's finally going to happen pretty soon.

It's a cool airport with a lot of rich history but it is only a shell of what it used to be.



Too lazy to work, too scared to steal!
User currently offlineCLEpirate From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 78 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 4565 times:

Thanks for tall the informaiton. YIP sounds like one of the pioneering airports of aviation.

So next question....What happened to Zantop? Are they still operational or have they gone the way of other carriers. I used ot see their 4 engine props at a number of Air Force bases in particular Warner Robbins, GA.


User currently offlineZANL188 From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 3592 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 4549 times:
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Quoting CLEpirate (Reply 8):
I used ot see their 4 engine props at a number of Air Force bases in particular Warner Robbins, GA.

Zantop used to run a lot of LOGAIR routes for the Air Force on contract. LOGAIR was setup to get parts from the depot to missile, bomber, and tanker bases as quickly as possible. Since Warner Robins was a depot it saw a lot of LOGAIR traffic. When the USSR collapsed LOGAIR went with it.

In the 80's I caught the "5Z" mission from Warner-Robins on a daily basis and launched the "5J" & "5K" LOGAIR missions as well. All run on Zantop L188s. I thought the ZAN L188s were classic airliners hence my username.



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User currently offlineTb727 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1649 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 4466 times:

Zantop kind of vanished back in probably about 2001 or 2002. I guess a lot of it had to do with the fact that no one in the family wanted to continue operating the airline which was going to involve finding newer aircraft to replace the 188's. A similar thing happened with another Zantop family company also based at YIP, Reliant Airlines. They still have a handful of L-188's on the south ramp that get chopped up once in a while. There was a possible buyer a couple years ago but the airplanes needed a lot of work to get going again not to mention the props are very expensive to have overhauled. I really miss the sounds of those Allison's whirling up on start-up.

I keep dreaming of the day where a hub will be opened up at YIP again like the days of Zantop and AIA but I don't think it's ever going to happen again.



Too lazy to work, too scared to steal!
User currently onlineKarlB737 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 3144 posts, RR: 10
Reply 11, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 4409 times:

Quoting CLEpirate (Thread starter):
Very interestd to learn more about YIP.

Their website:

http://www.willowrunairport.com


User currently offlineTomTurner From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 247 posts, RR: 17
Reply 12, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 4334 times:

What happened to the Argosy? (ex-Universal I presume?)

Quoting nwafan20 (Reply 2):
Probably the best part of the airport is the Yankee Air Museum. It has/had many great artifacts and still has flyable (and flying) B-17, B-25, and C-47. Unfortunately, in 2004 there was a major fire that burnt down the hangar and basically these 3 airplanes were the only thing saved. Things destroyed include the original North American OV-10A Bronco, a Waco CG-4A, Republic F-105, Aero L-39, a Link Trainer, and all their spares and toolings, as well as their mechanical library. The museum is slowly rebuilding, and are working on building a DC-9 simulator (YES!!) as well as their main goal of aquiring a B-24 that was built at the YIP plant, and many other projects. I hope i'm not overstepping my bounds here, but I urge you to donate to help rebuild this great museum at their website http://www.yankeeairmuseum.org/


User currently offlinedtw9 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1174 posts, RR: 2
Reply 13, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4261 times:

The ramp at Kyip in the early 60's


The main terminal hall in the late 50's


User currently offlineisitsafenow From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4984 posts, RR: 23
Reply 14, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 4175 times:

Quoting dtw9 (Reply 13):
dtw9

Hows that song go? "....memories.......pressed between the pages of my mind..."

Willow Run...the red concourse and the blue concourse...
Capital, TW and North Central on the blue, the others on the red. I think that was it.
safe   



If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
User currently offlinedtw9 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1174 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 4116 times:

Quoting isitsafenow (Reply 14):
Hows that song go? "....memories.......pressed between the pages of my mind..."

Ah yes. The good old days. One more for ya safe



User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3184 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 3978 times:

Quoting CLEpirate (Reply 4):
what ruway will be expanded to accomodate the 747?

One of the 23s is getting expanded I believe - they had that road torn up between the Old Zantop hangars (current location of Yankee AF) and where Roush hangar and old terminal is at least as of Last Summer when I went to Thunder Over Michigan. A 747 can use it because Kalitta used it all the time in the early to mid 1990s, there was another 747 carrier that flew there around 2000 from England with Jaguar parts after Kalitta/Kitty Hawk shut down for first time.

Quoting CLEpirate (Reply 8):
So next question....What happened to Zantop? Are they still operational or have they gone the way of other carriers. I used ot see their 4 engine props at a number of Air Force bases in particular Warner Robbins, GA.

Went belly up. One of my good friends was friends with the son of the owner. He would tell us that the airline was going strong when we would see 10 L188s missing engines on the ramp.

Quoting Tb727 (Reply 10):
A similar thing happened with another Zantop family company also based at YIP, Reliant Airlines

Wasn't Reliant what became USA Jet? I think the Zantop family company you might be thinking about was Trans Continental that flew DC-6s and DC-8s.


I remember the days when Zantop had the DC-6s, in fact that DC-6 on static display by the old YAF hangar that is gone was a former Zantop one. Zantop also have Convair 600s and DC-8s.

Kalitta was huge in the late 1980s/ early 1990s with a lot of DC-8s and 747s.

There was another carrier that flew a DC-6 there up to the late 1990s.

I was up in Detroit area this past Wednesday and I saw someone flying a Convair 580 into there a couple times, it was dark but it flew over my house twice possibly doing touch and gos.

Also for those interested - they have an awesome airshow every summer that I fly up from Orlando to see. In the past it was called Thunder Over Michigan, this year they call it the Gathering of Fortresses and Legends and have EIGHT B-17s scheduled to appear!!!! as well as a B-24 and Me-262 along with a ton of other warbirds


User currently offlinenwafan20 From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 157 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 3961 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 16):
Also for those interested - they have an awesome airshow every summer that I fly up from Orlando to see. In the past it was called Thunder Over Michigan, this year they call it the Gathering of Fortresses and Legends and have EIGHT B-17s scheduled to appear!!!! as well as a B-24 and Me-262 along with a ton of other warbirds

It's still called Thunder Over Michigan, they just aren't displaying the name as prominently. You will find the TOM name used in various pages on the website and printed on the tickets.



Long live the Red Tail! | WMU Flight Science major
User currently offlinedtw9 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 1174 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 3889 times:

Here's a nice article on Cargo Ops at KYIP in the early 80's. Lots of photos

http://www.globalaviationresource.com/reports/2009/yip.php


User currently offlineTb727 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1649 posts, RR: 9
Reply 19, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 3861 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 16):
Wasn't Reliant what became USA Jet? I think the Zantop family company you might be thinking about was Trans Continental that flew DC-6s and DC-8s.

No, Dave Zantop was running Reliant. We(Kalitta)bought their fleet of 12 Falcon's and 1 DC-9 along with their operating certificate in '02. TransCon was actually a Kalitta owned company, Scott was running it at the end. USAJet is off on their own with Active Aero. Transcon's certificate went and became ExpressNet.

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 16):

One of the 23s is getting expanded I believe

The road was torn up so they could expand the safety area at the approach end of the 5's. Expanding those runways would make the most sense with the ILS's but 27 is the one they will be expanding. They don't want to move Ecorse Road or spend the money to put that road under the runway.

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 16):
Kalitta was huge in the late 1980s/ early 1990s with a lot of DC-8s and 747s. There was another carrier that flew a DC-6 there up to the late 1990s.

There was a freight hub at YIP back then, that moved to HUF then to FWA and then Kitty Hawk of course was on board at that point.

[Edited 2010-04-05 05:52:27]


Too lazy to work, too scared to steal!
User currently offlinesurfandsnow From United States of America, joined Jan 2009, 2908 posts, RR: 31
Reply 20, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 3853 times:

Quoting WA707atMSP (Reply 5):
AA was concerned that YIP was too far from downtown Detroit (it was, at that time, the most isolated airport in the country - 12 miles further from Detroit than DTW)

Funny how AA didn't seem at all concerned about the long trek from downtown Dallas to DFW...

Quoting WA707atMSP (Reply 5):
The most far fetched proposal would have been to convert YQG to joint US / Canadian use, and build a second span of the Ambassador Bridge, and a customs road, through Windsor to bring US domestic passengers to / from the "US Domestic" terminal at YQG without going through Canadian customs.

Considering that YQG is deep inside Canada, this proposal couldn't have gotten very far!

Quoting WA707atMSP (Reply 5):
In April, 1966, Eastern and TWA moved from YIP to DTW after the L C Smith terminal had been expanded, and Concourses C and D constructed. The remaining four airlines at YIP (United, Mohawk, Lake Central, and North Central) finally moved in the fall of 1966, after the E and F concourses, and the Davey Terminal, were completed.

My how times have changed! We don't see too many of these names anymore!



Flying in the middle seat of coach is much better than not flying at all!
User currently offlineokie From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 3188 posts, RR: 3
Reply 21, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 3841 times:

Quoting surfandsnow (Reply 20):
Funny how AA didn't seem at all concerned about the long trek from downtown Dallas to DFW...

Oh the opposite, Think the Wright amendment, they wanted to be sure everyone came with them from DAL to DFW.

Okie


User currently offlineWA707atMSP From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 2264 posts, RR: 8
Reply 22, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 3814 times:

Quoting surfandsnow (Reply 20):
Quoting WA707atMSP (Reply 5):
The most far fetched proposal would have been to convert YQG to joint US / Canadian use, and build a second span of the Ambassador Bridge, and a customs road, through Windsor to bring US domestic passengers to / from the "US Domestic" terminal at YQG without going through Canadian customs.

Considering that YQG is deep inside Canada, this proposal couldn't have gotten very far!

YQG is actually closer to downtown Detroit than YIP, and (I think) a little closer than DTW.

Remember, when this idea was proposed 65 years ago the Detroit area was much less spread out than it is now. Most of the Detroit area's population was in the City of Detroit, Dearborn, and the Grosse Pointes, all of which would have been within the catchment area of YQG had it been Detroit's main airport.

Some suburbs like Royal Oak, Birmingham, Plymouth, and Mount Clemens existed, but they were surrounded by fields. Other suburbs, like Troy and Livonia, were nothing but farmland - there were working farms in Troy as recently as 30 years ago. Pontiac was so remote from Detroit that PTK was a stop on North Central's Detroit-Flint-Saginaw route until the early 1960s.

Of course, after World War II, the Detroit area began to sprawl rapidly. It's interesting that many "white collar" workers, whose jobs required them to travel, settled in suburbs like Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Novi, and Farmington Hills, that are northwest or due west of downtown Detroit - relatively close to DTW. When "blue collar" workers, whose jobs did not require them to travel, moved out of the city of Detroit, many of them chose to live in Macomb County - notheast of the city, and further from DTW.

I think the Detroit area would have developed much differently if Detroit's main airport had been built in Warren, or YQG, rather than in Romulus .



Seaholm Maples are #1!
User currently offlinesurfandsnow From United States of America, joined Jan 2009, 2908 posts, RR: 31
Reply 23, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 3798 times:

Quoting WA707atMSP (Reply 22):

I think the Detroit area would have developed much differently if Detroit's main airport had been built in Warren, or YQG, rather than in Romulus .

In *some* cases the new airports have spurred considerable development - think LAX (the coastal region was farmlands, while Glendale and Pasadena were the "it" areas of greater LA back then), DFW, or IAD. But in other cases (MCI, DEN) we have seen little or no growth near or even towards the airport, which then remains "in the middle of nowhere". Regardless of where Detroit's airport would have been, I think we would have seen a big migration North and West from the city since moving South and East are not possible  



Flying in the middle seat of coach is much better than not flying at all!
User currently offlineTeamAmerica From United States of America, joined Sep 2006, 1761 posts, RR: 23
Reply 24, posted (4 years 8 months 3 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 3779 times:

Quoting okie (Reply 21):
Quoting surfandsnow (Reply 20):
Funny how AA didn't seem at all concerned about the long trek from downtown Dallas to DFW...

Oh the opposite, Think the Wright amendment, they wanted to be sure everyone came with them from DAL to DFW.


It was the CAB that had all the carriers at DAL sign agreements to move to DFW before it was built. The Wright Amendment came much later, as a response to the rise of WN (which did not exist when those agreements were signed). Very different situation and long after the YIP/DTW dilemma of the 1950's.
So...why bring it up?  



Failure is not an option; it's an outcome.
25 Post contains images isitsafenow : About MCI, I think that one is debatable. safe
26 falstaff : I think it is still there. All of the planes that were displayed outside are still there.
27 nwafan20 : Yeah, sorry, I forgot to clarify. Only hangar aircraft were destroyed, all aircraft on display outside in the field are still there (although some of
28 Post contains images AeroWeanie : That might be one of General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems' 580 testbeds (N51211 and N51255). GDASI is based in Ann Arbor and the aircraft ar
29 WA707atMSP : I agree with you that we would have seen a big migration north and west in any event, but I also think we would not have seen as many office parks bu
30 isitsafenow : There was talk in the late 70's early 80's of Selfredge National Guard airport being Detroits second airport if DTW was overrun with flights. Over th
31 WA707atMSP : I agree about FNT - even though FNT is a little further from the northern Detroit suburbs than DTW, you can get from your airplane to your car in 3 o
32 NASCARAirforce : Which 27? L or R? I figure they would expand the 23s to the southwest where they are working on the safety areas vs towards Ecorse Rd. Doesn't Runway
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