FLY777UAL
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Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 4:16 pm

Stick with me on this one...

I was looking over the master plan for Sacramento International (along with the SacBee and a few other sources) and started to think about a few things:

  • SMF handled nearly 10 million passengers last year, 95% of which are pure O&D.
  • SMF/MHR handled 129,071 tons of freight in a 12 month period 2003-2004
  • Sacramento is the state capitol
  • Sacramento is a major distribution center, poised at the 5 and 80 interchange
  • Sacramento is home to over 17,000 high-tech jobs, mainly Intel and HP (NEC finished a $1.5 billion expansion of its chip manufacturing plant)
  • Sacramento's six counties which make up the metro area already have well over two million residents (Lincoln was the second-fastest growing city in the state in 2004)
  • Sacramento is trying to bill itself as the gateway to Napa and Lake Tahoe
  • Japan represents California's second largest export country after Mexico and accounted for $14.6 billion in exports, year 2001. Computer and electronic parts bring in $5.5 billion, and Japan is also the second largest importer of California agricultural products at nearly $1 billion
  • UK/Germany/Netherlands/France accounted for $16.8 billion in exports, year 2001

For years now, the airport authority has been saying that Sacramento can sustain flights to Europe, but has not yet made mention to Asia. Despite the proximity (or lack thereof) to non-stop flights ex-SFO, and a sufficiently large catchment area, could SMF potentially sustain 5x weekly or even daily flights to both NRT and LGW/FRA? I'm not asking if BA, LH, or JL would ever consider flights, but rather could SMF fill a 767/787-sized aircraft to these destinations? Perhaps as a tag-on from SAN, even (SAN-SMF-NRT/LGW/FRA)?

On a side note, the master plan is very interesting, especially the replacement plans for Terminal B. Seems as if they want to move to a "big-airport" feel with APM's (automated people movers), dual-level roadways, and a satellite terminal.

F L Y 7 7 7 U A L

[Edited 2005-06-08 09:25:13]
 
nycflyer
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 4:53 pm

Interesting thought. I didn't realize what a booming place SMF was. My only thoughts would be the lack of connecting opportunities in SMF, and also the proximity to SFO.

However, BWI maintains a handful of int'l flights, despite its proximity to IAD and to a lesser extent, PHL. I'm not sure about how similar in distance SMF is from SFO compared to BWI and IAD, but maybe a comparable BWI-type niche can be found.

Is there a big population in the northeast Bay Area, for whom driving to SMF might be equally convenient (or even marginally less convenient) than driving to SFO?
 
LAXintl
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 5:05 pm

While Sacramento will have a nice modern facility, this does nothing to overcome the areas relative lack of traffic.

There are other metro areas in the state including San Diego(2.9 million) and the Inland Empire(3.7 million) which have even larger populations however short of a few flights to Mexico do not have true international service.

Each one of these areas suffer the fate of being too close to a larger urban area. San Diego and the Inland Empire are simply too close to Los Angeles, while Sacramento is to close too the Bay Area.

At the moment neither international flights from Asia nor Europe are fragmented enough to lead service to what basically are secondary markets.

The only upswing I could see in the Sacramento area is for cargo flights. Mather Field could at some point could develop into a Northern California sorting hub for one of the express cargo airlines. In addition SMF or MHR might be an attractive option for some foreign cargo airlines that face operational/facility limitations at SFO/OAK.
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Carpethead
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 5:29 pm

Some good points but the current air carrier airport, SMF would need a much longer runway if long-range int'l flights are to become reality. 8,000ft, appropriate for N.American flying, is woefully inadequate and due to hot summers it probably needs at least a 14,000 ft.
 
N1120A
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 5:52 pm

Quoting Carpethead (Reply 3):
it probably needs at least a 14,000 ft.

You can count on 2 hands the number of civil airports that have 14,000 foot runways, and they don't include places like DFW, LAX, PHX, SFO, IAD and LHR. They would definately not need that kind of length

Quoting Carpethead (Reply 3):
8,000ft, appropriate for N.American flying,

8,000 feet is enough for a 763ER to make it to europe non-stop. Not that it is going to happen, SMF just does not have the traffic or population to support it
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ikramerica
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 6:46 pm

Sacramento is the gateway to Yosemite (along with Fresno) and Tahoe, and Europeans appreciate our national park systems more than American's often do. And of course, as was stated, it's just as close to Napa as SFO or OAK are, driving wise.

Distance between BWI and IAD is about the same as SMF and OAK. SFO is further due to having to cross that pesky Bay.
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mariner
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 6:49 pm

It raises the whole problem of the "North Bay" - and beyond.

Once you cross the Golden Gate, there is no major international airport until Portland.

Once you cross the Golden Gate, there is no major domestic airport until...

For the several millions who live in northern California, there is no easily accessible airport with halfway decent service to anywhere, until you get up to the far north, Eureka or Redding.

Except, perhaps, SMF. And even that is not hugely accessible from, say, Santa Rosa. It is somewhat more accesible than trying to get to SFO (or even Oakland), on a foggy day.

It used to take me a minimum of two hours from just outside Santa Rosa to SFO, on a good day with no traffic. On foggy days, or days with bad traffic on the Golden Gate, it took me up to four hours or more.

Oakland, with no Golden Gate or drive through San Francisco, still had its own problems of accessibility.

But to get international service, or just Mexico/Canada, or even simply domestic service, we had no other choices - except, for brave hearts, SMF.

SMF, generally, was about two hours, but it isn't the best road. It's a pain in the butt, winding through Napa - beautiful, great food, but useless if you're in a hurry to get to the airport.

There is Santa Rosa Airport (STS) but that has a 5000' runway and no commercial service.

I'm not suggesting that every small city in the US should have its own international airport, but Northern California is a lot of land.

And given that the 101 - north Marin through Santa Rosa/Headsburg - is a huge growth area, one day someone will have to come to terms with an airport.

STS isnt it. I guess it will have to become SMF.

Because eventually, the 101 south will grind almost to a standstill.

cheers

mariner
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aeronuts
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 9:24 pm

Couple of points,

One, while SMF may have access to Napa and Yosemite and is the state capitol. But let's face it, compare to SF and LA, it's boring. The majority of the tourist is interested in the Golden Gate, the Fisherman's Warf, etc... and the closest airport - SFO.

Two, even if JAL decided for what ever reason to fly from NRT to SMF, wouldn't they have to take move that plane off another destination, like to say LAX! Yes, those pesky international agreements does get in the way.
 
christao17
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 9:51 pm

I'm wondering if SMF-Asia or SMF-Europe wouldn't work better for planes like the 787? Long, thin routes that really don't work as well with higher capacity jets. Just a thought.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 4):
Quoting Carpethead (Reply 3):
it probably needs at least a 14,000 ft.

You can count on 2 hands the number of civil airports that have 14,000 foot runways, and they don't include places like DFW, LAX, PHX, SFO, IAD and LHR. They would definately not need that kind of length

True, 14k would be a bit more than necessary but an extension to at least 10k feet might be a good idea. Same way that SJC extended its runways over the years so AA's SJC-NRT service didn't have to make that silly tech stop in OAK. "Well, folks, we've just reached our cruise altitude of 3,000 feet and will begin our descent into Oakland... then we'll REALLY be ready to go!"
Keeping the "civil" in civil aviation...
 
halls120
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 11:21 pm

Unless terminal B is reconfigured/rebuilt, considering SMF as a long haul international port is absurd.

It was a lousy airport when I lived in Sacramento, and it hasn't gotten much better since then. While Terminal A is an improvement, terminal B is a dump. No room at check-in, among the worst configuration for TSA inspection, and cramped gate waiting areas. Top it off with the rudest, surliest TSA inspectors I've ever encountered, and it makes for a miserable airport experience. I've often wondered if OAK and SMF are in some kind of weird competition to see which facility can underperform the other.

As far as Sacramento being the gateway to Yosemite, according to Yahoo maps, the distance from OAK and SMF to Yosemite is almost the same.
"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." Mark Twain, a Biography
 
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RayChuang
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Wed Jun 08, 2005 11:53 pm

You can forget about SMF being a major long-haul international airport for one reason: the runways are too short to handle larger planes. Even the upcoming 787-8 would have to fly cargo/pax restricted for this reason.

Now, the 757-200, that's a different story. Because the 752 is a bit overpowered for its size, you could fly from SMF all the way out to many Caribbean destinations even on a full load on Sacramento's hot summer days.
 
DeltaSFO
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 1:45 am

Cities shouldn't be able to so easily waste taxpayer dollars on ego projects like a big airport for a midsize, secondary city in California.

SFO's International Terminal is another good example of this... They will never actually be able to use the terminal to its full capacity because at this point, the runway reconfiguration project--which was the most politically sensitive part of the airport master plan--is dead. Talk about the carriage coming before the horse.

Sacramento is about 90 miles from San Francisco. Well within the catchment area for longhaul flights. I wouldn't look for any international expansion other than more MX service.
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BlatantEcho
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 1:50 am

build a damn rail link to the bay area and let me avoid the delays at SFO, and the crappy terminals of OAK.

I'm from the North Bay, and driving to Sacto is a pain, but so is SFO/OAK and SMF has MUCH nicer airport.
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jerplane
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 1:55 am

Quoting N1120A (Reply 4):
SMF just does not have the traffic or population to support it

Doesn't Sacramento have a bigger population than Atlanta or Charlotte.
 
jacobin777
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 2:15 am

Quoting Aeronuts (Reply 7):
The majority of the tourist is interested in the Golden Gate, the Fisherman's Warf,

yah..until I moved a couple of weeks ago to Milpitas (SJC area), I lived a couple of blocks away from the wharf.....BIG tourist spot...

Quoting DeltaSFO (Reply 11):
SFO's International Terminal is another good example of this... They will never actually be able to use the terminal to its full capacity because at this point, the runway reconfiguration project--which was the most politically sensitive part of the airport master plan--is dead. Talk about the carriage coming before the horse.

hey..it looks great from the inside though...its actually quite large  bigthumbsup 

Quoting Mariner (Reply 6):
Once you cross the Golden Gate, there is no major international airport until Portland.

Once you cross the Golden Gate, there is no major domestic airport until...

For the several millions who live in northern California, there is no easily accessible airport with halfway decent service to anywhere, until you get up to the far north, Eureka or Redding.

Mariner, you have some valid points, but for the most part, there isn't a large enough population in the northern california region for people who want to travel internationally.....

most people I know who want to travel internationally have come to accept that either they will have to go to SFO, or in the worst case scenerio, take a flight from SMF to some other large city..there are enough large carriers which fly to SMF for that particular purpose...I just don't see a large international carrier (or even a domestic carrier such as UA) coming to SMF to offer any majour international service anytime soon (besides Mexicana Airlines)...
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nycflyer
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 2:19 am

Quoting Jerplane (Reply 13):
Doesn't Sacramento have a bigger population than Atlanta or Charlotte.

well maybe the city proper, but by metro area, ATL at least, blows SMF out of the water. CLT is still a good bit bigger, I'm pretty sure (but too lazy to actually look it up right now).

the big difference is that ATL and CLT are the only airports of any size for a long way (in CLT's case, GSP and GSO are too small to consider)
 
ikramerica
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 2:29 am

Quoting Aeronuts (Reply 7):
One, while SMF may have access to Napa and Yosemite and is the state capitol. But let's face it, compare to SF and LA, it's boring. The majority of the tourist is interested in the Golden Gate, the Fisherman's Warf, etc... and the closest airport - SFO.

true, depending on the tourist. but again, at least in summer, Yosemite is full of Euro tourists. I used to date a girl who lived on a town outside of the park (north of Fresno) and have a bit more experience with this than some. Most Euros think most American's are spoiled for not visiting the great national parks we have, and I'd have to agree.
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CaptnChaos
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 2:36 am

I just got back to MD from apartment shopping in the Sac area, and let me tell you, it is huge. I agree that expanded int'l service today wouldn't really be marketable, but the future is what holds promise. I think expanding now to be ready for the future economic growth is the best idea, rather than not building at all and SMF being caught with it's pants at it's ankles, so to speak. Redding and cities to the north are growing, but more importantly the property values are skyrocketing as people move from the south to the north to escape the crowd. I don't foresee the international service loads demanding 747's or 777's, but the narrow-body int'l service market looks like it would certainly be there. Plus, since I'm moving, Terminal B sucks, and it would be neat to have a cool new airport to spot at and fly into, but that's just selfish.
 
MarkATL
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 2:48 am

Any new international flights from SMF would basically just bleed off SFO traffic. Why would an airline want to increase fixed costs (by opening a new station or int'l ops) to serve the same number of passengers.

The other problem is SMF is out in the middle of nowhere, and for someone from the western 'burbs like West Sac, Davis and Fairfield, SFO just isn't enough more of a hassle to drive demand. Not to mention the one stop connections via ATL, ORD, DFW, MSP, JFK, EWR, etc.

Even though Sacramento is growing it just isn't big 'nuff yet to support new international operations.
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FLY777UAL
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 2:57 am

The entire Master Plan is very interesting to read, and I highly encourage a quick glance, but for those who have commented about the runways and terminals, I think these two links might be worth a view:

Page 29 of the terminal alternatives shows the suggested (and probable) alternative for Terminal B's replacement.

Page 42 of the Airfield Alternatives discusses the selected "preferred airfield alternative". Page 44 shows the diagram of the revised plan for this alternative. Interestingly enough, of the five plans which were selected to continue on to level two consideration, one common element was the lengthening of the Eastern runway from 8,600' to 11,000'. Also worth noting, the Western runway will be moved 1,200' outboard.

F L Y 7 7 7 U A L
 
FATFlyer
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 3:04 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 16):
Yosemite is full of Euro tourists

Not as much anymore. The park has seen a drop of 25% in visitors from its peak 7 or 8 years ago. I've been told much of that drop has been in international visitors.

Locally the current belief is that the drop is a combination of publicity about overcrowding and closed gates which ruined plans for some visitors in past years (no longer an issue but still believed); a been there done that attitude; higher gate fees; and an overall reduction due to 9/11 travel fears.
"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
 
DCA-ROCguy
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 3:20 am

From the Census Bureau: MSA populations (2002 figures, most recent)

Sacramento-Arden-Arcade-Roseville, CA 1,930,000
Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord, NC/SC 1,410,000
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA 4,529,000

Jim
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mariner
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 4:25 am

Quoting Jacobin777 (Reply 14):
.I just don't see a large international carrier (or even a domestic carrier such as UA) coming to SMF to offer any majour international service anytime soon (besides Mexicana Airlines)...

I don't think it is going to happen next week, either. Or even next year. It may never happen.

But eventually something has to give.

Maybe it will be a rail system through Sonoma and Marin Counties to SFO or OAK, but you still have the problem, to greater or lesser degrees, of getting across the Bay.

And the Bay ain't going away. Whereas people are moving to Marin/Sonoma - and north - if only because it is one of the few parts of California that has (a) reasonable rain, at least in winter and (b) vaguely affordable housing, although that is changing - fast.

The growth in Santa Rosa, for example, has been exponential. It is no longer a just dormitory suburb for SF - it has its own dormitory suburbs.

As I say, I have no idea if SMF is the answer, and even that would need some changes to the road access.

However, it would not surprise me to see at least one (US) carrier start service to Mexico from SMF.

The long term - who knows? But there is a problem.

cheers

mariner
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stirling
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 4:50 am

I will not single out any of the specific negative comments posted here about Sacramento; to each his own. It's obvious some of you haven't taken the time in getting to know the place, or are unable to see past your inherent prejudices.

From my position as "A glass half-full" kinda guy, Sacramento is great town, grossly under-rated. I will not bore you with the breadth it's fine attributes making the region infinitely more livable than the coastal regions of the state.

I will share one thing with you however, if it were not for my business taking me more to Fresno more lately, I would have already relocated to the Sacramento Area.
(My Current Location: Cheap Wine Capital of The USA/Modesto)

As for Sacramento not having the draws that other locations in California claim...all I can say is that the Sacramento C&VB have dropped the ball.

"Fisherman's Wharf", who cares? Sacramento is ideally suited between the Pacific and the Sierra with maybe the best weather in the continental US.
OK, So it's foggy in winter, at least we're not shoveling ten feet of snow, or sliding around on streets of ice.

Now, to the airport.
The Central Valley is the fastest growing region in the country according to the Great Valley Center (regional thinktank).
Sacramento must plan for their imminent position as Northern California's largest and most influential region.
The Bay Area will always be the Bay Area...but it's got nowhere else to go; unless they start filling in the San Francisco Bay.

Give them credit, they are thinking about the future, something, which in cash-strapped California, is sometimes a remarkably hard thing to find.
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jacobin777
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 4:50 am

Quoting Mariner (Reply 22):
I don't think it is going to happen next week, either. Or even next year. It may never happen.

But eventually something has to give.

...like the A380, it I think it is well ahead of its time......possibly in 15-20 years...but nothing right now....

as I stated before, a one-stopper to another large city will be sufficient for a loooooong time.....there are enough choices via LCC's and Legacies w/codeshare for pax to make it to their destination(s)

better to spend the money on something else...such as infrastructure, or better yet...education and energy
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ConcordeBoy
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 4:53 am

Quoting Laxintl (Reply 2):
short of a few flights to Mexico do not have true international service

...sit back and and ponder as to how dumb this statement really reads.

Quoting Laxintl (Reply 2):
At the moment neither international flights from Asia nor Europe are fragmented enough to lead service to what basically are secondary markets.

um, hate to break this to ya, but Europe and Asia already have service to secondary USA markets... heck, Europe's got tertiary  Silly

Quoting N1120A (Reply 4):
8,000 feet is enough for a 763ER to make it to europe non-stop.

on a cold day, with restricted pax and zilch cargo... sure
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stirling
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 5:01 am

Quoting ConcordeBoy (Reply 25):
um, hate to break this to ya, but Europe and Asia already have service to secondary USA markets... heck, Europe's got tertiary

European Secondary Exhibit A:
Portland. PDX for one.

European Tertiary Exhbit B:
Providence. PVD. (Are the Azores Europe?)

Asian Secondary Exhibit C:
Portland. PDX for two.

Asian Secondary Exhibit D:
San Jose. SJC. (At least for the time being)

Asian Secondary Exhibit E:
Las Vegas. LAS.
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mariner
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 5:02 am

Quoting Jacobin777 (Reply 24):
..like the A380, it I think it is well ahead of its time......possibly in 15-20 years...but nothing right now....

Sorry, I don't understand the "but nothing right now" comment.

I assume that it is - in some mysterious way - another knock of the A380, because I seriously doubt that SMF will be A380 for many, many years, and it wouldn't solve the basic problem - access to the north.

A380 and SFO? Of course, but you come back to access - through the city - no freeway - across the Golden Gate to northern California. Or through the city - no freeway - across the Bay Bridge and through Oakland - another bridge and Marin to Northern California.

Or cut inland, adding some time to the journey.

So it is difficult for me to imagine - A380 or no A380 - that access a huge and desirable area of California will remain limited to a bridge and one freeway.

But - forgive me - HTF did the A380 get into this?

cheers

mariner
aeternum nauta
 
halls120
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 5:59 am

Quoting Stirling (Reply 23):
I will not single out any of the specific negative comments posted here about Sacramento; to each his own. It's obvious some of you haven't taken the time in getting to know the place, or are unable to see past your inherent prejudices.

From my position as "A glass half-full" kinda guy, Sacramento is great town, grossly under-rated. I will not bore you with the breadth it's fine attributes making the region infinitely more livable than the coastal regions of the state.

My negative comments about Sacramento relate only to the airport. I lived in the Curtis Park neighborhood for three years, and loved it.

The airport, on the other hand, remains an embarrassment.
"Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." Mark Twain, a Biography
 
MarkATL
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 6:54 am

Quoting Stirling (Reply 23):
Sacramento must plan for their imminent position as Northern California's largest and most influential region.

That's a pretty bold statement about a what most would consider a fairly mundane city. It's not a bad place, but it ain't nothing special. Without the capital it would nothing more than a further north version of Fresno.

Quoting Stirling (Reply 23):
maybe the best weather in the continental US.

Look, I may have grown up in the Bay Area but I have lived in many places such as Colorado Springs, San Antonio, Chicago, Charleston, SC and Bremerhaven Germany. I have called Atlanta home now for about 15 years. I am not going to say we have the best weather, god knows that's not true. However Myself and my southern raised children on every trip to Sacramento in the summer can't wait to get out of that furnace. Sacramento has a lot going for it, but the weather ain't one of them. When southerners say "it's too damn hot", my bet is that you have no bragging rights on weather.
"...left my home in Georgia, 'n headed for the "Frisco" Bay...
 
jacobin777
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 7:20 am

Quoting Mariner (Reply 27):
Sorry, I don't understand the "but nothing right now" comment.

I assume that it is - in some mysterious way - another knock of the A380, because I seriously doubt that SMF will be A380 for many, many years, and it wouldn't solve the basic problem - access to the north.

there wasn't too much to look into it.....my only reference to the A380 is because I feel market conditions do not warrant a large plane such as that (there are a few routes needed for the A380, but thats about it)..

A380=market conditions not large enough for it... SMF=market conditions not large enough for them to expand

once again, from people who I know north of Napa, they are fine with the fact they either take the commute to SFO/OAK or fly out of SMF to some other large hub............
"Up the Irons!"
 
stirling
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 7:25 am

Quoting Halls120 (Reply 28):
The airport, on the other hand, remains an embarrassment.

Certainly. But only half.
Sure the old terminal is obsolete by today's standards, but since I can only worry about so much in this life, I choose to see it as a quirky throwback to another time; 35 years ago when it was really nice. I try to see it in that way, even when stuck in line at the bottle neck at security. It's only a small fraction of my life. If anything, it has character.

Quoting Markatl (Reply 29):
That's a pretty bold statement about a what most would consider a fairly mundane city.

Compared to the rest of the state in 2005, you are absolutely correct. Being mundane does however have it's benefits.
But 2045? That's an entirely different story.
All indicators show Sacramento as being the center of a much larger northern California conurbation in the evolution of California. Much larger than the present-day "Bay Area" which is bound to the physical limitations of geography; mountains or water.

Quoting Markatl (Reply 29):
Look, I may have grown up in the Bay Area but I have lived in many places such as Colorado Springs, San Antonio, Chicago, Charleston, SC and Bremerhaven Germany. I have called Atlanta home now for about 15 years. I am not going to say we have the best weather, god knows that's not true. However Myself and my southern raised children on every trip to Sacramento in the summer can't wait to get out of that furnace. Sacramento has a lot going for it, but the weather ain't one of them. When southerners say "it's too damn hot", my bet is that you have no bragging rights on weather.

Sounds like you're an Army-Brat too. We share many of the same stops on our resume, with mine including additional forays into Dallas, West Virginia, Portland OR, Phoenix, and North Dakota.
Out of them all, I genuinely prefer the "Dry Heat".
It's why I started out my comments with "To each his own".
We have this thing here called the "Delta Breeze" which is nature's own brand of air-conditioning that breezes in darn near every evening. Turning a 105 degree day into a 75 degree evening in no time flat.

Different strokes for different folks.
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mariner
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 7:31 am

Quoting Jacobin777 (Reply 30):
my only reference to the A380 is because I feel market conditions do not warrant a large plane such as that

Sorry, I still don't understand what that has to do with SMF - now or at any time in my lifetime.

Especially since the consensus is that - presently - SMF wouldn't even warrant a 767 to Europe.

cheers

mariner
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MarkATL
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 7:44 am

Quoting Stirling (Reply 31):
Sounds like you're an Army-Brat too.

Actually I was the one in the service. The look on my former hippie parents face when I enlisted is still a cherished memory (I was 17 and actually got them to sign off). I was conceived in the Height-Ashbury in the spring of '68. I count my blessings that I actually have as many chromosomes as I do under the circumstances. They now live in the more "conservative" Berkeley. Another great memory was when I got married in Bizerkley and walked out of the church in full dress blues. The looks on the faces of the people on the street was precious.
"...left my home in Georgia, 'n headed for the "Frisco" Bay...
 
AADC10
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 9:04 am

SMF as an international gateway is a delusion of grandeur. There are major hubs with limited international service, such as DFW, IAH, DEN and MSP. It would only happen if SFO, OAK and SJC become hopelessly overloaded.

There would have to be a huge non-stop premium but most of the businesses that would pay it are closer to San Francisco or even San Jose. Airlines do not care if tourists want to land closer to Yosemite unless they will pay a premium to do so. They want high yield business passengers and those passengers are closer to the San Francisco Bay. Tourists can take a connecting flight and get a lower fare.
 
jacobin777
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 10:28 am

Quoting Mariner (Reply 32):

Sorry, I still don't understand what that has to do with SMF - now or at any time in my lifetime.

Especially since the consensus is that - presently - SMF wouldn't even warrant a 767 to Europe.

it seems as if i'm making the same statements (in a different way)...nothing more, nothing less..........

expanding SMF and having The Leviathan is(was) not needed....

I used The Leviathan as an example because it is the 1st aviation example I could think of where a particular aviation product is not needed at this point in time..
"Up the Irons!"
 
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mariner
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 10:56 am

Quoting Jacobin777 (Reply 35):
I used The Leviathan as an example because it is the 1st aviation example I could think of where a particular aviation product is not needed at this point in time..

I'm not going to bite. It's such a pointless debate.

Why not look to the bright future?

cheers

mariner
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jacobin777
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 11:21 am

Quoting Mariner (Reply 36):
I'm not going to bite. It's such a pointless debate.

Why not look to the bright future?

Funny ( coincidentally), I was going to mention the same thing when I saw your response on the thread heading....

at least we agree on something.. Wink
"Up the Irons!"
 
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mariner
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 11:32 am

Quoting Jacobin777 (Reply 37):
Funny ( coincidentally), I was going to mention the same thing when I saw your response on the thread heading....

 whiteflag 

Sorry. Totally lost. No idea what that means.

 whiteflag 

cheers

mariner
aeternum nauta
 
christao17
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 11:41 am

Quoting Stirling (Reply 23):
"Fisherman's Wharf", who cares? Sacramento is ideally suited between the Pacific and the Sierra with maybe the best weather in the continental US.
OK, So it's foggy in winter, at least we're not shoveling ten feet of snow, or sliding around on streets of ice.

Are you KIDDING? Has Sacto's weather changed since I lived there? It was about two degrees cooler than Hades during the Summer! San Diego would beat Sacto weather any day of the year.
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ups757
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 1:00 pm

IMO, Mather (MHR) will see widebody international freighter flights long before SMF has long-haul international passenger flights. Goods from Asia will drive the need for direct additional flights from Asia. Mather is building itself as an all Air Cargo Airport.
 
c172
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 5:22 pm

No one has mentioned the KSMF has maintained daily 767-300 flights to Honolulu (Hawaiian). Those passengers previously had to drive to the bay area airports (SFO, OAK, SJC). SMF-HNL simply shaved off Hawaiian bound traffic from the bay area. Why not apply the same concept to Europe?

British Airways operated 763 service between London Gatwick and Baltimore/Washington for years; an excellent example of a secondary US city receiving nonstop European service while being within driving distance of a major Int'l airport (Dulles in this example).
 
LPLAspotter
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 7:03 pm

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
Are the Azores Europe?)

The Azores is as much europe as Hawaii is a state. The only flag you see flying here is the Portuguese one, the local government flag, and the flag of the European Union.

LPLAspotter
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N1120A
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Thu Jun 09, 2005 7:16 pm

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
Asian Secondary Exhibit E:
Las Vegas. LAS.

A MAJOR Tourist destination, that also gets Europe service. Also, while it is low yield for domestic US flights, LAS is a HIGH yield destination for long haul tourists

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
European Secondary Exhibit A:
Portland. PDX for one.

Subsidized

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
European Tertiary Exhbit B:
Providence. PVD. (Are the Azores Europe?)

You are kidding with that, right?

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
Asian Secondary Exhibit C:
Portland. PDX for two.

Subsidized

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
Asian Secondary Exhibit D:
San Jose. SJC. (At least for the time being)

Subsidized

Quoting Stirling (Reply 31):
Out of them all, I genuinely prefer the "Dry Heat".
It's why I started out my comments with "To each his own".
We have this thing here called the "Delta Breeze" which is nature's own brand of air-conditioning that breezes in darn near every evening. Turning a 105 degree day into a 75 degree evening in no time flat.

Um, there is no way Sac's weather compares to Southern California. Well, that is not true, the Sacto summer compares well with the Mojave Desert.

Quoting C172 (Reply 41):
British Airways operated 763 service between London Gatwick and Baltimore/Washington for years;

You are talking about a totally different city, a much shorter haul (lower risk), a much larger metro cachement area, and much higher yields

Quoting C172 (Reply 41):
No one has mentioned the KSMF has maintained daily 767-300 flights to Honolulu (Hawaiian).

You are comparing a low yield domestic tourist medium haul to Asian or European long haul service. For what reason would this be?
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ConcordeBoy
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Fri Jun 10, 2005 4:31 am

Quoting C172 (Reply 41):
an excellent example of a secondary US city receiving nonstop European service while being within driving distance of a major Int'l airport

Uh, no it isn't: BWI is a coterminal within the WAS metro area.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 43):
Also, while it is low yield for domestic US flights, LAS is a HIGH yield destination for long haul tourists

...SQ might disagree  Wink

Quoting N1120A (Reply 43):
You are kidding with that, right?

No, he's not-- they do have (sparse) nonstop service to the Azores.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 43):
Subsidized



Quoting N1120A (Reply 43):
Subsidized



Quoting N1120A (Reply 43):
Subsidized

...there exists a significant and fundamental difference between flights that are subsidized in the name of political interest and flights that are "subsidized" by those of private enterprise--- you'd be well served to learn it  Smile
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September11
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Fri Jun 10, 2005 4:35 am

Photos of SMF airport


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Tom Bukowski
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © AirNikon



Looks very small to me .... plenty of space to expand, indeed.

[Edited 2005-06-09 21:42:39]
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N276AASTT
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Fri Jun 10, 2005 9:20 am

Sure Sacramento is the government seat for California, doesn't mean that it can support international service to Japan or London. Austin is the capital of Texas, no service to Japan or London. Most flights are routed through either DFW or IAH (or other cities depending on your airline). Sure it would be great to see some of the foreign carriers at SMF because it speaks highly of the Sac economy. I don't see it happening, SFO is too close. UA with it's Express flights to SFO will make it a lot more difficult for Sac metro to get more international service. I think there is only one gate at SMF that can support a flight like that with a secure arrivals area for Immigration and Customs. There would have to be a MAJOR re-do of the terminals. Terminal B is updated and very nice, however, Terminal A is outdated and needs to be re-done. There is TONS of land out there where the airport can expand, but I don't see SMF being anything more than what it is now.
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stirling
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Fri Jun 10, 2005 10:38 am

Quoting Christao17 (Reply 39):
Are you KIDDING?

No I am not kidding.
As I prefaced my original comments, TO EACH HIS OWN.
I Prefer Sacramento, over any place I lived, and I have lived in many places. You can have San Diego and it's overpriced real-estate any day. My daughter goes to SDSU, she can have it. But I do enjoy the break just the same when I go to visit...Jackets at night, in the summer is a sin in my book.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 43):
Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
Asian Secondary Exhibit E:
Las Vegas. LAS.

A MAJOR Tourist destination, that also gets Europe service. Also, while it is low yield for domestic US flights, LAS is a HIGH yield destination for long haul tourists

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
European Secondary Exhibit A:
Portland. PDX for one.

Subsidized

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
European Tertiary Exhbit B:
Providence. PVD. (Are the Azores Europe?)

You are kidding with that, right?

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
Asian Secondary Exhibit C:
Portland. PDX for two.

Subsidized

Quoting Stirling (Reply 26):
Asian Secondary Exhibit D:
San Jose. SJC. (At least for the time being)

Subsidized

The statement was in regards to the fragmentation of International Air Services, not whether or not said service was subsidized.
All of my points remain valid.
Las Vegas may be a gigantic domestic market, but until such time it's international departuring pax outrank those of SFO, LAX, ORD, MIA, JFK, EWR, IAD, and few others, it will still be a SECONDARY international market.

SATA serves Providence. Once a day...hence why I referred to it as a tertiary market. (In support of ConcordeBoys original statement.)

Quoting LPLAspotter (Reply 42):
The Azores is as much europe as Hawaii is a state

I wasn't sure of the geographical distinction, since it sits in the middle of the Atlantic, however, I was fully aware of the flag that is flown. Tahiti is not Europe? It's why I asked...Never assume anything here, and then again, it seems taboo to ask genuine questions sometimes.

Quoting N1120A (Reply 43):
Um, there is no way Sac's weather compares to Southern California. Well, that is not true, the Sacto summer compares well with the Mojave Desert.

And some of the fastest growing regions of this fine country are in places with heat indexes much greater than Sacramento...Inland Empire? Phoenix? Tucson? Austin?, Fresno? Anywhere in Florida?...it doesn't seem to impede the interest of those relocatees one bit.

One more time. It is my preference. I like HOT weather! When it's summer, I want it to feel like summer! In San Diego...the average daytime for July is between 74 and 77 degrees...that's not summer, that's Spring. Give me something that's gonna make me sweat! Yes, I like New Orleans and Houston Too. (just requires more Right Guard).
Come on gentlemen, it's a matter of taste, no need to get all high and mighty.
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johnboy
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Fri Jun 10, 2005 12:02 pm

I have to say that I like Sacramento more and more, each time I go there (I live in Contra Costa County, California). Beautiful rivers and trees, and best of all, yesterday I saw the snow-topped Sierras from downtown Sacto for the first time in a long time....stunning!

If it weren't for the fact that I get paid more for my job in the Bay Area, and my partner is firmly ensconced at his UC Berkeley job, we would definitely be looking at Sacramento.

Airport wise, I've flown out of there a few times when WN flights from Oakland aren't available. As a matter of fact, I NEVER fly out of SJC -- that has truly been the airport from hell for me, even though it's a bit closer than Sacto.

I'm always amazed at how much land SMF has available surrounding it. But there's a growing sense of trepidation as I pass all those housing tracts springing up in the northern Sacto/Natomas area.
 
LPLAspotter
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RE: Sacramento As A Long-haul International Port?

Fri Jun 10, 2005 5:43 pm

Quoting ConcordeBoy (Reply 44):
No, he's not-- they do have (sparse) nonstop service to the Azores

Yes this is true. However, the Providence service was a charter with SATA Air Acores or North American depending on the contract. Lately SATA has been flying TER, PDL - YYZ scheduled. Boston, I don't know, but I do believe it is charter or at the most a seasonal scheduled flight. Gone are the days we had TP flying their L1011-500 to JFK, BOS, and even LAX (nonstop)  Sad

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