The start date and schedule times are still pending, but Southwest Airlines has made a big push to bring back large jet service between Washington DCA and St. Louis starting this fall. Southwest,
which bought restricted slots from another airline, will provide two daily
roundtrips between DCA and STL with ticket sales expected to begin late July or
August. The service is expected to begin by early October.
The specific schedule for the new flights is pending a decision by the
Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA) regarding a request by Southwest to modify the slot times that were
originally assigned to the previous carrier.
This is great news for our regular DC commuters. For some time, we've had more fliers than non-stop seats between St. Louis and Reagan National. Southwest has responded to our strong market. It is Lambert’s largest carrier currently providing 94 daily
flights to 33 destinations. Southwest will also begin two new daily non-stop
flights between St. Louis and San Antonio beginning August 12.
Two jets crossed paths over Lambert’s FAA Tower.
Contrails are the long cloud-like vapor trails that form behind aircraft as they jet across the sky. On a clear blue day, like we’ve seen in recent days, its easy to see the weave of crisscrossing steaks which are made up of water vapor in the exhaust of aircraft engines. In the picture above, the paths of two jets were aligned along the same track as they flew over St. Louis. The eastbound jet’s contrail was already breaking up into whispy puffs as the westbound jet flew over Lambert’s FAA’s Air Traffic Control Tower.
St. Louis ArtWorks students snap pictures of a plane about to land at Lambert this week.
Pictures and more pictures were snapped this week at Lambert by a group of young artists in training. Lambert invited 17 high school and college-age students with St. Louis ArtWorks to see what life is like on a typical day at Lambert. The students captured planes taking off, baggage being loaded into planes, crews painting stripes on the airfield taxiways, restaurants in action, homecoming reunions and much more. The students will turn those pictures into sketches, paintings and other works of art for an exhibit at the Airport later this summer. The Boeing Company is sponsoring this summer art project at Lambert.
Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge served on several panels throughout the conference including an Airport Director's forum. She was also the featured speaker at the Women in Aviation breakfast where she encouraged scholarship recipients to take advantage of every opportunity to grow and strengthen their leadership skills in their young careers.
The conference featured a Welcome to St. Louis reception for attendees who represent airports, airport businesses and small businesses from around the country. The Acting Administrator for the Federal Aviation Administration, FAA, also visited the St. Louis conference to address agency's on-going effort to improve opportunities for minorities and women-owned businesses on federal projects. The former CEO of the restaurant company Baja Fresh, David Kim, was the conference keynote speaker. He encouraged business owners and leaders in the audience to follow their passions and invest in people, their employees, to grow. The final day of the Conference showcased the annual AMAC Expo which allowed companies to highlight their services.
St. Louis and Mid-Missouri students from People to People get ready to fly out of Lambert for a trip to Europe.
The entrance the C Concourse Checkpoint is now opened up after renovations.
For months, the path to the C Concourse Checkpoint in Terminal 1 was obscured by a line of construction walls. On Friday, the walls were hauled off. The change is dramatic with higher ceilings and brighter lights. The entrance to the checkpoint is now open and inviting. It’s all part of the Airport Experience Program renovations. This is the first phase of the lower level to be substantially completed. Next week, newly renovated restrooms at the checkpoint entrance will open. And the checkpoint will get more screening equipment. When needed, the TSA will have the ability to screen passengers in eight lanes.
Passenger traffic at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport increased 4.4 percent in April marking the fourth straight month of passenger growth. Through April, Lambert is logging a 3.6 percent increase in passenger enplanements for 2012 versus the same time period in 2011. Connecting traffic remains strong for 2012 with an increase of more than 8 percent in April and 11.6 percent for the first four months of 2012. Nearly 509,000 passengers boarded flights from Lambert in April and 1.87 million passengers, year-to-date.
“The numbers certainly support what we witnessed in April here at Lambert with healthy business travel as well as a strong spring leisure travel season,” said Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “We’ve stayed busy through the Memorial Day holiday weekend so we have every reason to believe this positive growth trend will continue through the summer.”
In June, Lambert will operate approximately 255 daily departures to 61 non-stop destinations. Southwest Airlines will begin service to Lambert’s newest non-stop destination, Panama City Beach, FL, on June 3.
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Avoid parking fees the next time you pick up a passenger. Lambert provides free waiting zones for motorists near each terminal.