PHLBOS
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US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 2:46 pm

The PHL-CEP Expansion has now taken an unexpected turn with US (and other carriers) now being opposed to PHL's CEP Expansion project (which includes constructing a new parallel runway and a relocation of UPS' facilities). Higher fuel costs and the economy are the listed reasons for US' opposition; several years ago, US, pre-HP merger, was supportive of the long-term initiative.

http://www.philly.com/philly/busines...xpansion_plan.html?cmpid=125219969

Article exerpt:

US Airways and Southwest Airlines Co. wrote the airport in summer 2010, expressing concerns about the costs they would bear and what they called premature construction of a runway that alone would not greatly alleviate delays in takeoffs and landings because the airspace here, shared with New York, is the most congested in the world.

Tensions have surfaced because the city wants airlines to sign a 15-year lease that includes paying for the runway, which the city estimates would cost $1.8 billion and which the airlines say would cost $3 billion.


It subliminally sounds like US wants to have a greater say in WHAT actually gets built in PHL.
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HPRamper
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 3:45 pm

They do have a point. I'm not really sure that building an additional runway will be cost-effective when taking into consideration that aircraft will still be sitting on the tarmac due to ATC holds. US has a lot of eggs in the PHL basket, so if PHL lost a chunk of its profitability it would of course affect US the most.
 
EWRandMDW
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:36 pm

Sounds a lot like opposition to O'Hare expansion. When times were good the airlines clamored for it. Now they would like expansion to move forward as long as they don't have to kick in to help pay for it! They can't have it both ways!
 
tp1040
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:38 pm

Given the reality of building a new runway, 3 billion does sound closer to the actual cost.
 
usairways85
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:39 pm

I think there are a number of points to made here:

As pointed out an additional runway does not immediately solve all delays. The FAA has to continue to work to improve the airspace over Philly and the redesign needs to consider taxiway redesign. During busy times you have 20+ aircraft lined up on a myriad of taxi ways, some of which require taxing to one end of the airport only to work you way back to the end you started at.

The article only refers to the new runway. I thought a large portion of this project is a redesign of B/C that would create one larger terminal and essentially result in larger alleys. The only small alley that will remain would be between the current D and E. This will directly benefit US, however I don't see any mention of it.

It is tough to measure the UPS Drama. PHL is already pretty weak when it comes to cargo traffic (not considering UPS) so it would be a big hit to lose UPS. WIth no UPS, PHL will likely be reduced to single digit cargo flights each day.

Part of the article lists passenger or movement numbers. These are relatively low and well below what they were a few years ago. Which means in the long term these are only likely to rise. US makes a big deal when they receive favorable on time percentages in PHL, but everyone forgets that they are off their peak number of flights and these delays may very well come back if more flights are added.

The article makes a comparison to PIT. While PHL is no PIT and I don't think it will ever end up like PIT but you always seem to have to wonder about PHL. A few years ago you had to worry US would go BK and leave PHL and now you have to worry that a potential merger with AA (pure speculation by us) will result in a smaller US presence in PHL.

I completely disagree with the economy agruments. The same can be said for the debacle that was the 2nd rail tunnel under the Hudson. These things aren't built in a few months. Let's say the delay for a few years, the economy picks up, you spend 12 years of horrendous airport movement conditions with greater flight numbers in the midst of construction and then when its finally complete the economy tanks again. Tying these public work projects to the economy makes no sense because the economy is so cyclical and its anyone's guess which way it is going to go.

I wonder how much WN is involved anymore. When they first opposed the project they were still the clear # 2 carrier. After the cuts this spring they will probably be second by a much smaller margin.

Quoting PHLBOS (Thread starter):
It subliminally sounds like US wants to have a greater say in WHAT actually gets built in PHL.

I think this actually makes sense, however I just wish US and city were more constructive in accomplishing this.

[Edited 2012-01-09 09:17:48]
 
Thenoflyzone
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 5:05 pm

US was stupid in de-hubbing PIT.

PHL is a mess. Bad airport and runway layout. Not much can be done with PHL even if they wanted to. Stuck between the city to the north and the delaware river to the south.

They should dump PHL, and make PIT their primary hub, along with CLT. At least PIT has the adequate runway system to handle 500,000+ movements with very few delays. It also has all the room in the world to do a proper expansion, be it a 4th parallel or more terminal space.

In doing so, you also remove the congested NY airspace out of the equation, resulting in even smoother operations in untapped Western Pennsylvania.

Thenoflyzone

[Edited 2012-01-09 09:16:01]
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enilria
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 5:14 pm

Quoting PHLBOS (Thread starter):
The PHL-CEP Expansion has now taken an unexpected turn with US (and other carriers) now being opposed to PHL's CEP Expansion project
Quoting EWRandMDW (Reply 2):
Sounds a lot like opposition to O'Hare expansion. When times were good the airlines clamored for it.

What has really changed is that in the past airlines wanted a vast array of runways and gates and no delays. Now they realize that they make much more money at airports that have few gates and little space. The more expensive space that is built the more of it is used by the competition. Right now US basically owns PHL and even WN has had to shrink. US doesn't want to change anything and certainly doesn't want to pay their own money to change anything. Terminal or runways, same thing. Airlines want their hubs locked down so there is no room for competition. It is a sad reality. The economics of building a new runway may or may not be good, but even if it cost $1, US Airways would have the same opinion.
 
usairways85
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 5:28 pm

Quoting enilria (Reply 6):
US doesn't want to change anything and certainly doesn't want to pay their own money to change anything. Terminal or runways, same thing. Airlines want their hubs locked down so there is no room for competition. It is a sad reality. The economics of building a new runway may or may not be good, but even if it cost $1, US Airways would have the same opinion.

That argument makes sense but I think US is too short sighted because PHL is by no means a world class gateway. The B/C corridor is nothing to write home about anymore, the D hammerhead is way too packed and I imagine E is the same, the B/C piers are as pax UNfriendly as you can get, US has outgrown A-west and now relies on A-east for international flts. I believe A-east is the 2nd newest terminal after A-west and F and yet it already shows its age. So while it may make US money now they are likely hurting their imagine in the long run because they insist on using out dated facilities.

And it's not like all airlines have the same mentality, AA built the new, albiet smaller than originally designed, terminal in JFK, DL is building a new one in JFK, DL is building a new one in ATL, DL built a new one BOS, CO/UA is building a new one in IAH, AA built a new one in MIA.
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 5:38 pm

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 4):
Part of the article lists passenger or movement numbers. These are relatively low and well below what they were a few years ago. Which means in the long term these are only likely to rise.

Passenger numbers at PHL are unlikely to rise due to US's approach to pricing. US keeps capacity down in uncompetitive markets in order to push yields up. With WN drastically reducing their presence at PHL, that will only serve to intensify the downward pressure on passenger counts.

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 4):
As pointed out an additional runway does not immediately solve all delays. The FAA has to continue to work to improve the airspace over Philly

Agreed. But it takes a very long time to get a new runway built, and it may makes sense to proceed while the FAA does have funding to pick up part of the tab. I suppose one question to ask is whether the delays in poor weather are more due to airspace congestion or runway configuration.

Quoting thenoflyzone (Reply 5):
US was stupid in de-hubbing PIT.

They should dump PHL, and make PIT their primary hub, along with CLT.

A PIT hub is unworkable with US's cost structure and LCC penetration into large- & medium-sized markets in the Northeast, combined with the competition from the hubs of larger carriers in more robust markets (i.e. EWR/DTW/IAD/ORD).
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 5:40 pm

Quoting thenoflyzone (Reply 5):
They should dump PHL, and make PIT their primary hub, along with CLT.

It's just too small and isolated a market to serve as a major airline's primary hub. You need O&D to make a hub work.
 
PHLBOS
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 5:49 pm

Quoting thenoflyzone (Reply 5):
US was stupid in de-hubbing PIT.

They should dump PHL, and make PIT their primary hub, along with CLT. At least PIT has the adequate runway system to handle 500,000 movements with very few delays. It also has all the room in the world to do a proper expansion, be it a 4th parallel or more terminal space.

While this is old and beating a dead horse, I will respond.

The problem with PIT (at least when it was a US hub) was that the majority of traffic was strictly connecting w/little O&D. Conversely and for all its faults, PHL has a significantly higher O&D traffic.

IMHO, the countdown to Judgment Day for US' PIT hub began when they were first comptemplating a merger w/UA back in 2000/2001. Such a merger would've meant having 3 hubs (PHL, PIT & IAD) located within 300 miles of each other. Even in the best of economic times, a large airline sustaining hub operations at 3 airports located that close together would've been economically unsustainable long term.

Had that merger gone through, 9/11/01 or no 9/11/01; the PIT hub would've been reduced to a spoke city and PHL would've likely become a focus city similar to US' current BOS operations and IAD (where there's a lot more land for expansion) would've remained a full-blown hub and international gateway. US' CLT hub would've survived unscathed.

Anyway, after 2 trips to Chapter 11 and possibly facing Chapter 7; US needed to make themselves more attractive for a possible merger partner w/another carrier (which ultimately turned out to be HP) and cut costs where they could. Had they kept the PIT hub following the HP merger; it would've likely been cut ANYWAY but at a greater/higher cost.

Long story short: While PIT's facilities and airfields are more (mostly) modern and better laid out than PHL; the passenger traffic just isn't there in comparison. Greater Philadelphia has a much higher population than Greater Pittsburgh to tap into passengerwise, that's just a fact.

Even if US were to shut down (or at least close its PHL hub) tomorrow; there's enough pasenger demand for other carrier(s) to eventually pick up the traffic; note the optional plural I placed there for air carrier(s). Granted, the case for an expansion (the topic of this thread) would diminish.

Again, remember, it's the AIRPORT that's planning this expansion NOT the AIRLINE(S).

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 4):
I thought a large portion of this project is a redesign of B/C that would create one larger terminal and essentially result in larger alleys.

That's only a piece/component of the overall CEP puzzle. The primary meat of the overall plan involves the runway inprovements.

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 4):
I completely disagree with the economy agruments.

I think the 15-year lease part of the whole deal is what triggered the airlines' opposition. Given the way the aviation market keeps changing, no carrier wants to make long-term commitments/promises anymore. US is basically applying Lessons Learned from its PIT deal nearly 2 decades earlier.

Quoting ScottB (Reply 8):
I suppose one question to ask is whether the delays in poor weather are more due to airspace congestion or runway configuration.

The correct answer is a combination of both.

[Edited 2012-01-09 10:20:33]
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nycdave
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:19 pm

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 4):
I completely disagree with the economy agruments. The same can be said for the debacle that was the 2nd rail tunnel under the Hudson. These things aren't built in a few months. Let's say the delay for a few years, the economy picks up, you spend 12 years of horrendous airport movement conditions with greater flight numbers in the midst of construction and then when its finally complete the economy tanks again. Tying these public work projects to the economy makes no sense because the economy is so cyclical and its anyone's guess which way it is going to go.

Agreed -- the whole purpose of having a government to provide infrastructure is so that (at least if the government is GOOD) there's the ability to look at the long and very long-term. Whether rails, roads, seaports, or airports, the development or addition of infrastructure usually RESULTS in growth.

When today's (7) train in NYC was built, on a huge concrete and steel viaduct, most of the parts of Queens it passed through were rural farmland... which certainly had no need for mass transit. Within just two decades of its completion, the population of the area had surged to become almost the Queens we know today, one of the most populous areas of the whole US.

The trick, however, with airports, is that the demands imposed by o/d traffic are much different than those imposed by connecting traffic. A connecting hub can be placed almost anywhere -- and then MOVED from there -- with little to no consequence for an airline. When PIT was built, it provided WAY more capacity than was needed for o/d traffic anytime in the forseeable future and after... so that it could be used as a connecting hub for US.

By contrast, almost ANY increase in capacity in NYC will be sucked up in an instant. They could add a runway to JFK and EWR, completely re-do LGA, THEN DL could eliminate its entire operation there, and within a year or two, usage would be just as high, because there's o/d business that other airlines want to get their hands on.

PHL may be making the calculation that even IF US drew down business there, or reduced PHL to a focus city, there's still enough o/d demand that the capacity would be picked up by other carriers... in which case investing in a new runway, regardless of how US feels, is still a smart long-term investment in the area economy.

If, on the other hand, you feel that without a connecting hub at PHL, most of today's capacity would be unused and unwanted, even if the region was in boom times... well, then it'd be a dumb investment.

Quoting enilria (Reply 6):
Terminal or runways, same thing. Airlines want their hubs locked down so there is no room for competition. It is a sad reality.

Well, that's all dependent on the economy. In boom times, they want more capacity, and don't care if the competition gets some as long as they're getting enough to maintain their position.
 
usairways85
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:15 pm

Quoting ScottB (Reply 8):

Passenger numbers at PHL are unlikely to rise due to US's approach to pricing. US keeps capacity down in uncompetitive markets in order to push yields up. With WN drastically reducing their presence at PHL, that will only serve to intensify the downward pressure on passenger counts.

This comment was directed more towards long term growth. Aren't air travelers supposed to increase by some double digit percentage over the next 5, 10, 20 years? I think this construction is estimated at 10-15 years so while US may suppress capacity now they likely won't be able to maintain this approach for another 15 years.

Most airlines have cut capacity to maintain a high LF, however I doubt they will be able to do this forever and there will be some time in the future that airlines will have to add capacity.
 
UNITED777ORD
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 8:33 pm

PHL needs a set of parallel runways and I hope the new runway project continues to move forward. The NY/NJ/PHL airspace congestion can be addressed while the runway is being constructed. PHL is fortunate to have the opportunity to build another runway because other airports such as EWR and LGA need a set of parallel runways but I highly doubt that those two airports would be capable of building a new runway anytime soon. If US Airways doesn't want the project to proceed then they should move back to Pittsburgh. PIT has plenty of gate space and runways!!
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 9:36 pm

Quoting HPRamper (Reply 1):
I'm not really sure that building an additional runway will be cost-effective when taking into consideration that aircraft will still be sitting on the tarmac due to ATC holds. US has a lot of eggs in the PHL basket, so if PHL lost a chunk of its profitability it would of course affect US the most.

Very true - once again (although it's pointless), we see the folly of US abandoning a more modern, efficient PIT in favor of the bedlam at PHL. So very sad.
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PHLBOS
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 9:44 pm

Quoting GSPSPOT (Reply 14):
Very true - once again (although it's pointless), we see the folly of US abandoning a more modern, efficient PIT in favor of the bedlam at PHL. So very sad.

Once again, it's the O&D; something that PIT lacked. For US, PHL is still more of a cash cow for them despite its problems.
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B757capt
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:15 pm

Quoting thenoflyzone (Reply 5):
US was stupid in de-hubbing PIT.

Stupid? I don't think you thought this one through. How about Allegheny county was stupid in thinking they could charge those kinds of rates.

Quoting ScottB (Reply 8):
A PIT hub is unworkable with US's cost structure and LCC penetration into large- & medium-sized markets in the Northeast, combined with the competition from the hubs of larger carriers in more robust markets (i.e. EWR/DTW/IAD/ORD).

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CIDFlyer
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 12:18 am

While its a shame PIT with all its modern terminals and space had US de-hub there and keep congested PHL, its all about the money. PHL makes more money and its where more passengers want to go and thats the bottom line. Its pretty much the same thing AA did to STL. STL had plenty of terminal space and air space (especially with that new runway) but chose to close shop and keep ORD as its main midwest hub despite being more corwded and congested.
 
Flaps
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:04 am

PIT would no longer be viable even if it did have have more O&D due to LCC penetration in most of the key markets as stated above. A significant part of the debt created building the terminal there has been paid down. When that is fully accomplished, from a cost of operation standpoint PIT will be competitive again with most airports. The market dynamics however will remain what they are. US isnt exactly highly thought of in the region anyway. Can't see any incentives being rolled that way.
On the other hand, we would happily take the UPS hub operation if PHL is no longer suitable for them. The land and all of the other infrastructure is either in place or ready to be put in. No doubt the red carpet would be rolled out for them. UPS already has a massive presence in the market so who knows. Makes for interesting thought though.
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:15 am

Talk about a lose-lose scenario!!
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USAIRWAYS321
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:16 am

Quoting United777ORD (Reply 13):
If US Airways doesn't want the project to proceed then they should move back to Pittsburgh. PIT has plenty of gate space and runways!!

If US Airways doesn't want more gate space and runways, they should move to an airport with...more gate space and runways? Huh???
 
klkla
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:22 am

If as rumored on this board many times a US/AA merger happens I would think PHL would be downgraded to a regional hub with AA's JFK hub surving due to NYC's larger O&D market (especially for international routes). Under that scenario I could see why U.S. would not want to foot the bill for any expansions at PHL.
 
USAirALB
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:09 am

I have to say, on an sort of unrelated topic, PHL isn't as bad as it used to be IMHO. CLT has gotten much worse in the fact that with all of the US/Airport expansion going on at CLT, within the past couples months, more flights of mine have had longer/more frequent ground delays in CLT than in PHL.
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:35 am

Quoting USAirALB (Reply 22):
I have to say, on an sort of unrelated topic, PHL isn't as bad as it used to be IMHO. CLT has gotten much worse in the fact that with all of the US/Airport expansion going on at CLT, within the past couples months, more flights of mine have had longer/more frequent ground delays in CLT than in PHL.



Yes, I think right now PHL is probably right at where it should be for a relatively smooth operation (yes there are still delays). Coincidentally I think PHL has seen a drop in total flts over the years, albeit they have shifted a large amount of flts from mainline to Express, while CLT has grown.

I connected through CLT in the Fall and there were 3-5 flts departing from the end of either B or C within ~30 minutes and it was a complete mess. I found it no more convenient than PHL.

Quoting klkla (Reply 21):
If as rumored on this board many times a US/AA merger happens I would think PHL would be downgraded to a regional hub with AA's JFK hub surving due to NYC's larger O&D market (especially for international routes). Under that scenario I could see why U.S. would not want to foot the bill for any expansions at PHL.



PHL would no doubt see a decrease in service. Without getting into the specifics that are probably covered in the other thread I think it is conceivable that PHL still maintains a 200-300 flt/day hub.
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:54 am

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 23):
I connected through CLT in the Fall and there were 3-5 flts departing from the end of either B or C within ~30 minutes and it was a complete mess. I found it no more convenient than PHL.

The only really good thing about CLT, from a connecting travelers prespective, is that there are no shuttles/trams/busses. There is just one terminal. I mean sure, you do have walk in a long corridor/tunnel and go down stairs to access the E Concourse, but at least you don't have to take a shuttle. That will change it the future, sadly.
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dumbell2424
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:43 am

Perhaps it is time to re-evaluate the CASE program?

http://www.pitairport.com/UserFiles/File/pdf/Case_Program.pdf
 
flightsimer
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 6:25 am

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 10):
problem with PIT (at least when it was a US hub) was that the majority of traffic was strictly connecting w/little O&D. Conversely and for all its faults, PHL has a significantly higher O&D traffic.

...

Long story short: While PIT's facilities and airfields are more (mostly) modern and better laid out than PHL; the passenger traffic just isn't there in comparison. Greater Philadelphia has a much higher population than Greater Pittsburgh to tap into passengerwise, that's just a fact.

Even if US were to shut down (or at least close its PHL hub) tomorrow; there's enough pasenger demand for other carrier(s) to eventually pick up the traffic; note the optional plural I placed there for air carrier(s). Granted, the case for an expansion (the topic of this thread) would diminish.

*I dont see O/D as an issue though. Just throwing it out there, but IIRC for 2010, PIT was in the 80-95% range for O/d traffic with over 8 million passengers. I searched for PHL's and from this source, it said PHL O/D was only 8.7mil.

http://www.phila.gov/investor/pdfs/SP%20Airport%20Credit%20Report.pdf

SO in reality, if the above is true, then the arguement of a larger O/D traffic volume is not applicable.

*The whole purpose of a hub is to take Passengers from City A to City C through City B, because face it, no major hub in the world is strictly handeling O/D. In Pittsburgh's Case, the only time it wouldnt make real sense to have a hub there is for flights heading to Europe with passengers connecting from airports that would require passengers to fly west/North-west bound to PIT.

*But that is exactly what happened at PIT. SWA came in, built up their ops (even though they are scaling back in 2012) to become the second largest airline. Delta expanded and is now flying a PIT-CDG flight which is now completely self sustaining. It seems like every airline that was flying to PIT has expanded their system since US left.
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PITrules
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 10:40 am

Quoting Flaps (Reply 18):
On the other hand, we would happily take the UPS hub operation if PHL is no longer suitable for them. The land and all of the other infrastructure is either in place or ready to be put in. No doubt the red carpet would be rolled out for them. UPS already has a massive presence in the market so who knows. Makes for interesting thought though.

Great idea on the surface, but UPS will never want a hub in PIT, as much as I would like them to. In fact, they don't even want what they have in PHL. Its a different business model than what they had 20 years ago. They have rebuilt SDF into a huge, modern sorting facility, and since then regional sorts in CAE, DFW, DSM have been closed, while operations at RFD and PHL have been cut in half. IMHO, look at this as UPS playing hardball to get a good buyout of their PHL facility, then they will take the money and run, all while gladly moving into the same area as the other cargo carriers at PHL. As far as UPS having a massive presence in PIT, I don't see them having a larger market here than any other major city. In fact, FedEx has double the capacity into PIT, and of course Pittsburgh is the global headquarters for FedEx Ground.

Quoting dumbell2424 (Reply 25):
Perhaps it is time to re-evaluate the CASE program?
http://www.pitairport.com/UserFiles/...m.pdf

Negative. Been discussed plenty in the numerous PIT threads. PIT needs to stop looking at the weaknesses of other markets, and fix their own which is high costs. This can easily be accomplished if the local gov't would stop interfering with the airport's affairs, and let it get revenue as intended by the FAA for natural gas drilling rights.

Quoting flightsimer (Reply 26):
*I dont see O/D as an issue though. Just throwing it out there, but IIRC for 2010, PIT was in the 80-95% range for O/d traffic with over 8 million passengers. I searched for PHL's and from this source, it said PHL O/D was only 8.7mil.

http://www.phila.gov/investor/pdfs/S...t.pdf

Except that report is wrong:

"Large O&D market, supported by a relatively stable economic base, which spans 11 counties across
Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland. It provides a good base for local air travel demand that in fiscal 2010 totaled an estimated 8.7 million O&D enplaned passengers, or approximately 57% of the 15.2 million total
"

PHL handled double the 15.2 million total quoted, so therefore you can assume the total O&D is about 17 million. Also, 57% O&D is a pretty healthy number for a hub.

[Edited 2012-01-10 03:17:13]
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PHLBOS
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:35 pm

Quoting Flaps (Reply 18):
On the other hand, we would happily take the UPS hub operation if PHL is no longer suitable for them. The land and all of the other infrastructure is either in place or ready to be put in.

If UPS were indeed to pull out of PHL; ACY's a lot closer for an alternative.
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usairways85
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:20 pm

Quoting PITrules (Reply 27):
Its a different business model than what they had 20 years ago. They have rebuilt SDF into a huge, modern sorting facility, and since then regional sorts in CAE, DFW, DSM have been closed, while operations at RFD and PHL have been cut in half.

Yes, I think service in PHL has dwindled. The article states that UPS averages ~45 flts a day however outside of the holiday season I think it is more like 20-25 a day (excluding weekends)

Quoting flightsimer (Reply 26):
WA came in, built up their ops (even though they are scaling back in 2012)

PIT never developed the way WN wanted. yesterday they only had 19 flts.

Quoting flightsimer (Reply 26):
Delta expanded and is now flying a PIT-CDG flight which is now completely self sustaining.

The flt is only operating 5x weekly this summer, down from daily last summer

However, I digress, let's not make this another PHL vs. PIT discussion
 
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enilria
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:21 pm

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 7):
That argument makes sense but I think US is too short sighted because PHL is by no means a world class gateway.

LGA is a %^&*-hole, but is going to be one of DL's most profitable hubs when the dust settles. The facility means very little if there is a lot of local traffic at a high value. A good facility is most important when it is a hub with little else to offer in terms of population and business traffic (CVG/CLT/etc). Connecting passengers are more able to make choices about what airline they fly so the terminal is more important. PHL is only about 25-30% connecting traffic.

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 7):
And it's not like all airlines have the same mentality, AA built the new, albiet smaller than originally designed, terminal in JFK, DL is building a new one in JFK, DL is building a new one in ATL, DL built a new one BOS, CO/UA is building a new one in IAH, AA built a new one in MIA.

JFK is very competitive, so the economics there are different. You want to have the best experience where there is competition and you don't care when you own the joint. DL fought the new ATL terminal and even got the airport director fired over it. I think CO/UA are simply renovating the IAH hub. I don't think they are building a new terminal, maybe a concourse at most. Again, IAH falls more closely to the CLT than PHL. PHL is a hostage airport. IAH is probably 60% connect so they have to keep it decent for connecting passengers who have choices.

Quoting nycdave (Reply 11):
Quoting enilria (Reply 6):
Terminal or runways, same thing. Airlines want their hubs locked down so there is no room for competition. It is a sad reality.

Well, that's all dependent on the economy. In boom times, they want more capacity, and don't care if the competition gets some as long as they're getting enough to maintain their position.

I think it is a permanent change. Airlines now realize that they lose money when they start expanding.
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:29 pm

Quoting enilria (Reply 30):
LGA is a %^&*-hole, but is going to be one of DL's most profitable hubs when the dust settles. The facility means very little if there is a lot of local traffic at a high value.

I think that is very much an open question.

Delta will likely be able to drive a revenue and yield premium in many markets out of LaGuardia based on the halo effect of Delta's overall strong presence in New York. However, with competition at LaGuardia increasing, I'm not sure how far they will be able to drive that revenue premium - they will be able to raise fares in smaller, less competitive markets to offset competitive pressure in bigger, higher-volume markets, but on the flip side, those smaller markets are also probably more price-sensitive and will be a bigger challenge to support substantially higher fares. And as for profitability, Delta is going to be flying a whole lot of short flights with RJs where the previous operator struggled to profitably operate lower-cost props. It will be interesting to see how the interaction of higher operating costs from RJs, combined with increasing competition, offset Delta's strengthening New York presence and resulting higher fares.
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 3:53 pm

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 4):
While PHL is no PIT and I don't think it will ever end up like PIT but you always seem to have to wonder about PHL. A few years ago you had to worry US would go BK and leave PHL and now you have to worry that a potential merger with AA (pure speculation by us) will result in a smaller US presence in PHL.

Um, no. I agree I don't see PHL becomming another PIT. PHL is WAAY to big of a market to lose a hub. Should US' presence shrink at all at PHL, I think one could just about guarantee someone else would be moving in. 6 million residents, yours truely included, call Greater Philly home.

Quoting thenoflyzone (Reply 5):
US was stupid in de-hubbing PIT.

PHL is a mess. Bad airport and runway layout. Not much can be done with PHL even if they wanted to. Stuck between the city to the north and the delaware river to the south.

They should dump PHL, and make PIT their primary hub, along with CLT. At least PIT has the adequate runway system to handle 500,000+ movements with very few delays. It also has all the room in the world to do a proper expansion, be it a 4th parallel or more terminal space.

Logistics wise, yes, PIT is in much better shape of handling the traffic. From an economics/market standpoint, PIT sucks in comparison. PIT is barely one third the size of PHL's market. PIT has 8 million total pax annually; PHL has at least duble that on O&D alone.

I have often wondered why US dumped PIT in favor of PHL, and that's why. Not to mention, US was stuck with the freight of the billion dollar new terminal in 1992. Now that PHL wants to stick us with another billion dollar-plus expansion at their present-day crown jewel airport, yeah I can see why US would be upset. However, US was the one who suggested overhauling PIT to build the larger than life boondoggle, while the county argued against it.

US does have a point that adding a new runway would not directly reduce delays on the ground. It would in essence just add places to park aircraft pretty much while they wait for clearance from the tower. Now, if this were to be coupled with some redesign of terminals B and C as was suggested above, then I guess I could see US ponying up its own dough.
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:23 pm

Quoting steeler83 (Reply 32):
Now, if this were to be coupled with some redesign of terminals B and C as was suggested above, then I guess I could see US ponying up its own dough.

The overall master plan of the CEP essentially calls for the elimination of Concourses B & C and replacing it with a larger, more centrally located concourse which would allow for dual taxilanes on either side of the concourse for ease of aircraft entry/exit; however, it is not 100% dependent on the runway expansions/alterations. It could theoretically be separated from the CEP and constructed earlier; like the recent Runway 17-35 extension was.

The main issue with constructing this particular concourse would be that it would completely disrupt US' mainline domestic operations during the whole construction process. The new consolidated concourse would be located where the current taxilane between Concourses B & C is. Constructing the new concourse would temporarily knock out as many as 10 to 12 gates simultaneously; the boarding area for the Terminal F Shuttle bus (Gate C16) would also have to be relocated. That may be more than what US is willing to tolerate even though the end product would greatly benefit them.

For those that thought US' PHL operations (A-West, B, C & F) were rather spread out now; the construction-related disruptions/temporary relocations would make their operations even more spread-out/disjointed.

And since US' CEO is STILL itching to merge with another legacy carrier (now the rumors are focused on AA as a possible merger partner); such an action could result in US downsizing/downgrading its PHL hub to a focus city.
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:42 pm

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 33):

For those that thought US' PHL operations (A-West, B, C & F) were rather spread out now; the construction-related disruptions/temporary relocations would make their operations even more spread-out/disjointed.

You're missing A-east in there. And with AA set to potentially move down to E that would give US pretty much all of A-east to use, potentially off setting a few gates lost due to construction.


I understand facilities aren't the end all be all but it is tough to make the comparsion to the dump over in LGA because the NY market is much bigger than PHL. And while PHL may not be a purely connecting hub it certainly has more connections than LGA will ever have. I would just hate to see US drag their feet now and 10 years from now the facilities at PHL are similar to what DL is trying to operate out of in JFK.
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:48 pm

Quoting PITrules (Reply 27):
Its a different business model than what they had 20 years ago. They have rebuilt SDF into a huge, modern sorting facility, and since then regional sorts in CAE, DFW, DSM have been closed, while operations at RFD and PHL have been cut in half.

I think CAE is still open. They still run transcons to ONT, OAK etc and total quite a few flights a day.
 
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 6:30 pm

Quoting commavia (Reply 31):
And as for profitability, Delta is going to be flying a whole lot of short flights with RJs where the previous operator struggled to profitably operate lower-cost props. It will be interesting to see how the interaction of higher operating costs from RJs, combined with increasing competition, offset Delta's strengthening New York presence and resulting higher fares.

And many of those flights are going to be on 50-seaters that don't offer first class. They will have higher CASM than Dash-8's, without the service improvement of first class. ROC is fortunate--we're getting CR7's--but some places aren't.

Regarding PHL and PIT, even before US consolidated PIT into PHL, a large percentage of PIT markets already had (fewer) flights to PHL. It's not clear to me why US can't funnel domestic pax through PIT, and international pax through PHL where the bigger O &D is more important. A win-win for US pax all around.

Recently I made the mistake of connecting through PHL (schedule fit my business meeting), and was reminded why I avoid it like the plague. Bad weather caused cancellation of a large chunk of US's connecting flights from those badly-laid out runways. Fortunately, another delayed flight to my final destination ROC was going out after my originating flight from SFO arrived. So with the help of a dedicated CSA in SFO, I still got home late the same night. Many people weren't so fortunate.

That particular delay situation would not have happened at PIT, both due to better runway layout and clearer airspace. Yes, I know about US's improved general PHL delay statistics. When the goes down, it still goes down.

It's understandable why US now opposes expansion at PHL. But the airport remains a bad place to connect. I got away with avoiding PHL for 11 years this time, and hopefully it will be more before I have to use it again.

Quoting enilria (Reply 30):
I think it is a permanent change. Airlines now realize that they lose money when they start expanding.

If they start expanding on routes with insufficient yield, yes. But even now there are growth opportunities, as G4 shows.

Quoting enilria (Reply 6):
US doesn't want to change anything and certainly doesn't want to pay their own money to change anything. Terminal or runways, same thing. Airlines want their hubs locked down so there is no room for competition. It is a sad reality. The economics of building a new runway may or may not be good, but even if it cost $1, US Airways would have the same opinion.

This is why I'm glad the state of Maryland gave US a big middle finger when they gate-squatted at BWI in the mid-90's after de-hubbing. WN wanted to grow, and Maryland built the new concourse B even while D gates sat underused pre-AirTran. Now BWI has suitable capacity, with some room to do apron rehabs on older areas to prepare for the future.

Jim
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 7:01 pm

Quoting DCA-ROCguy (Reply 36):
It's not clear to me why US can't funnel domestic pax through PIT, and international pax through PHL where the bigger O &D is more important.

An abbreviated version of my earlier post on the matter:

1. Proposed merger w/UA (2000/2001) that never took place; while US did not pull down its PIT hub in anticipation of this merger, it certainly would have had it gone through.

2. Post-9/11/01 economic downturn.

3. Two trips to Chapter 11 and a possible venture into Chapter 7 all in a period of roughly 3 to 4 years.

4. Preparation and anticipation of merging with another carrier (ultimately, HP in Sept. 2005).

IMHO, the only reason WHY US even had a hub at PIT at all was because the airline (as All American Airways then later Allegheny) originally started there.

[Edited 2012-01-10 11:04:16]
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Tue Jan 10, 2012 10:06 pm

Quoting PHLBOS (Reply 37):
1. Proposed merger w/UA (2000/2001) that never took place; while US did not pull down its PIT hub in anticipation of this merger, it certainly would have had it gone through.

Fair enough. Those of us who used the PIT hub numerous times remember its superiority to PHL as a facility well. Re UA-US, had that merger gone through, yes, PIT absolutely would have been shut down, despite Goodwin and Wolf's claims to an "absolute commitment to Western Pennsylvania." Fortunately, neither the public, Congress, nor DOJ bought that siren song. PIT would have been the *first* target for shutdown, based upon the reasons you mention.

There was more to US's decision to hub in PIT than historical accident. From the 70's to the 90's, Pittsburgh's location and the economics and structure of the industry made PIT an excellent location for a hub. From what I've read, CEO Edwin Colodny in particular pushed PIT buildup.

Jim
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PITrules
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Wed Jan 11, 2012 3:35 am

Quoting steeler83 (Reply 32):
However, US was the one who suggested overhauling PIT to build the larger than life boondoggle, while the county argued against it.

Allegheny County begged and pleaded with USAir for decades to get the terminal underway. USAir only agreed in 1985 when the former terminal was literally falling apart, and even then USAir cautioned about the facilities high costs.

Quoting HPRamper (Reply 35):

I think CAE is still open. They still run transcons to ONT, OAK etc and total quite a few flights a day.

Technically still open, but only has a handful of flights and is a shell of its former self just like PHL. PHL only has 12-14 planes during the midnight sort, which is down from over 30 at its peak. The point is UPS does not need the size of these regional hubs anymore. They are using larger aircraft into SDF.
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luckyone
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Wed Jan 11, 2012 4:21 am

Quoting usairways85 (Reply 7):
DL is building a new one in JFK, DL is building a new one in ATL, DL built a new one BOS,

Building a shiny new facility doesn't equate profitability. Delta's $1billion construction and abandonment project at Boston contributed to their Chapter 11 filing, and it was never used for its intended purpose. Delta isn't building a new terminal at JFK, surely with the lessons of BOS and CVG in mind. They are expanding an already-existing facility. Delta is not building the new Concourse F at ATL. That is a City of Atlanta project, though Delta certainly had influence on the design. Same with the City of Houston and IAH's Terminal B.
 
USAIRWAYS321
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RE: US Airways & Others Now Opposed To PHL Expansion

Wed Jan 11, 2012 4:34 am

Quoting PITrules (Reply 39):
and even then USAir cautioned about the facilities high costs.

Rightfully so.

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