I received this via email this morning and wanted to share. I asked the author if I could post with his name and he graciously granted permission.
Thank you for putting this website together.
I’m concerned about this project for the following reasons. First, this re-building project has been spearheaded by developers who will profit from it, rather than from public frustration or concerns with the current airport.
Second, a few years ago when the proposal to re-model KCI was made public in the KCSTAR, the public response was outrage. Almost immediately afterwards, the airport made a conscious decision to put the busiest airlines into the same single terminal. In doing so, it assured that a once convenient parking situation became a nightmare for Kansas Citians as we were kept out of access to nearby parking lots when we needed to pick-up or drop-off travelers.
Third, the only people one hears publicly supporting this project are either developers who stand to profit from it, consultants who stand to profit from continuous consulting, or politicians whose re-election coffers can be filled by those who will profit from a new airport.
Finally, the defenders of the project falsely attribute the current drop of KCIs outgoing flights to problems with the airport. They conveniently ignore that, since 9/11, the industry has changed dramatically. Airlines continue to consolidate, gasoline costs have spiked ticket prices, resulting in fewer leisure travelers by air, and dramatic developments in tele-conferencing have impacted business travel considerably.
I read today Mark VanLoh, Director of Aviation, have the audacity to suggest that the reason we don’t have direct flights to Europe stems from the configuration of the airport. That’s complete nonsense. Cities the size of Kansas City’s metropolitan area simply don’t have direct flights to Europe. In the case of St. Louis, those flights resulted from a historical accident of TWA choosing the city as its base, and the fact that the St. Louis region was once much larger than its current rank among American metropolitan regions.
This whole project is a boondoggle worthy of “The Music Man.” It serves no public purpose, and will do nothing but put money into the pockets of greedy manipulators of the public.
So thank you for your efforts. I’ve contacted each of my local representatives with the same message today.
Craig Prentiss, KCMO
Craig Prentiss is right on track. KCI is fine the way it is. If Sly wants to spend more money, he should add light rail between JoCo and the airport..
Raleigh Durham has a non stop flight to London via American Airlines
Pittsburgh has a non stop flight to Paris on Delta (offered seasonally)
Portland has a non stop flight to Tokyo an Amsterdam on Delta
Just a few examples of other similar size cities, without a true hub, who have international service.
The point that VanLoh was making is that our customs holding area and gate arrangement is not large enough to support a wide body aircraft coming from an international destination.
I am not sure the airport made a conscious decision to house the two busiest airlines in one terminal to support the need to build a new airport.
Delta only flies a 757 and only does so because it is within range (4705 mi) and that plane only has 174 seats to fill rather. (16 Business Class 158 Coach). It also operates a JV on this flight so it only has to sell 8 Business Class seats and 79 Coach seats- meaning the risk is pretty minimal. They also swapped their equipment so AF could downgrade from a real International type aircraft
AA/RDU only has the flight because of contract it has with business based in Raleigh who signed a contract to help subsidize the flight- GlaxoSmithKline and others in the research triangle (something KC doesn’t have),
The port of Portland paid Delta $3.5 MILLION to have their international flights. Don’t see anyone saying lets use the $1.2 Billion to have an international flight…if we did an airline would def come knocking.
Mike – point taken. However our current facilities prevent us from any of the situations above, even with the luxury of financial incentives.
Totally agree with Mr. Prentiss’ statement. Anyone endorsing this idea should be fired and replaced with people who make sense. That includes the mayor!