To kick off Mobility Awareness Month, Miami-Dade County leaders and advocates for the local disability community held a plug-in ceremony to celebrate the installation of ten new wheelchair charging stations at Miami International airport. The airport is one of the first in the US to install the charging stations, which exceed the basic Americans with Disabilities Act airport requirements.
“I applaud Miami for remaining on the forefront of airport accessibility with this fantastic new initiative,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava. “Resources like these wheelchair charging stations are critical to better serving travellers with special needs, and ensuring Miami is on the leading edge of the new norms of air travel.”
Menzies Aviation has announced that it has been awarded full-service ground handling agreements by Flair Airlines, Canada’s only independent ultra low cost carrier. This will further expand Menzies’ partnership with the airline to encompass nine of the 19 stations in its domestic network.
Menzies will provide passenger and ramp services to Flair Airlines at Halifax Stanfield International airport, Ottawa International airport and Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International airport from May; at the airports of Saint John, Charlottetown and Victoria from July; and at Abbotsford International airport from August.
This will build on the existing partnership between Menzies and Flair at two key Canadian stations, with Menzies having supported the carrier at Toronto Pearson International since February, and at Saskatoon John G Diefenbaker International since August 2020, where the Menzies team is currently preparing for flights to restart in May.
Investment firm Ventus and Singaporean company Sky Logistica have acquired Prague-based Skyport, a central European air cargo infrastructure company. Skyport handles cargo at Prague airport and has operations in Bratislava and Košice, both in Slovakia. It operates in a modern semi-automated airside facility and processes more than half of all air cargo passing through Prague airport.
The airside cargo handling facility in which Skyport operates was acquired by Singapore-headquartered Elite Logistics Fund in connection with the acquisition of Skyport by Ventus and Sky Logistica.
“The last 12 months have proved the importance of air cargo infrastructure as a strategic component of global trade,” commented Andy Popovich, Chief Executive Officer, Ventus. “Investing in automated facilities and modern operations is the future of this industry and we are excited to work with our institutional capital partners to further invest in this asset class. Skyport has huge potential for growth and we are focused on optimising the existing facilities and unlocking additional capacity by deploying technology to enhance operations.”
Ventus is an infrastructure investment and asset management firm headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. Founded in 2020, it focuses on investing in air cargo and robotic industrial infrastructure, mainly in Europe and North America.
Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International airport and Assaia International are in the process of deploying Assaia’s Turnaround Control solution at the airport. This solution will help improve turnaround transparency and assist the station in working with airline partners to enhance on-time performance. Designed to provide a round-the-clock overview of what is happening during turnarounds, this application will notify employees if it detects any deviations from schedule. In essence it can identify the elements or situations that most often cause delays and report back to managers in order that corrective action can be taken.
“Assaia’s technology adds critical data points to CVG’s early-stage neural network for operational advancements,” explained Brian Cobb, Chief Innovation Officer at the airport. “Structured data generated by artificial intelligence will provide information to make decisions, optimise airside processes and improve efficiency and safety.”
The airport is installing new cameras and artificial intelligence technology at several of its gates to capture turnaround data and provide visibility to its airline partners of what is happening at the airport. Computer vision is used to generate insights from video streams and leverage untapped operational data to optimise apron operations in real-time. The system’s roll-out began in April 2021.
Airport Terminal Services has been awarded the ground handling contract for Spirit Airlines at Orlando International airport.
The three year contract began on March 17, 2021. This contract expands the existing relationship between ATS and Spirit, with current partnerships in Baltimore, Boston, Dallas, Portland, Santa Ana and West Palm Beach.
ATS currently operates in Orlando and will be adding a new dedicated team focused on delivering above and below the wing service for the Spirit operation.
Autonomous technology that enhances airport functions such as airside operations, terminal space operations or intra-transit options is the focus of the Airport Innovation Lab’s inaugural one-year programme at the San Diego International airport.
Applications are being accepted for this programme that will allow companies with autonomous technology solutions to test and refine their products in a live environment. Examples of technology accepted for this programme are autonomous pushback solutions, AI based smart assistants and autonomous transit options for moving passengers and staff throughout the airport within the terminal space. These solutions offer operational efficiency and logistics and provide a positive passengers experience. Accepted applicants will participate in a four-quarter, one-year programme. In each three-month quarter, participants will partake of a variety of workshops, will test sprints and experience one-to-one mentoring sessions that will culminate with demonstration presentations. Topics of the workshops include operations, revenue management, business development, IT, customer experience and marketing.
At the end of the programme, successful autonomous technology solutions will have the potential to enter into contract negotiations with the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority.
Over the last two months, TCR has delivered a wave of new cargo handling ground support equipment to WFS at JFK, LAX and eight other airports across the US.
“WFS is very pleased to extend its long standing European co-operation with TCR into the US market, starting with this project across ten cargo stations. We like the agility and flexibility of the TCR team and their GSE rental model, which supports WFS’ continuous growth in the US market,” said Craig Smyth, Group CEO of WFS.
“It is a great honour to support our global Customer WFS on their continued growth path in the US and we thank the WFS US team for their trust in TCR Americas,” commented Jan De Leeuw, Managing Director TCR Americas.
TCR supports airports, airlines and ground handlers by providing an holistic, one-stop-shop GSE leasing solution.
In mid-January, Intercargo assisted the first Aeroméxico flight to transport Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines.
This was followed on January 28 with a special operation concerning Sputnik V vaccine transportation, using an aircraft from Boliviana de Aviación to La Paz. For this special operation, Intercargo used its recently incorporated cool dollies.
This equipment is unique in Argentina and is seen as a useful element in the necessary logistics to transport COVID-19 vaccines, keeping the coldchain intact and avoiding abrupt climate changes when the sensitive cargo is uploaded to or downloaded from an aircraft.
Intercargo removed the dollies’ rollers and locks, covering the area with welded sheeting to achieve a greater cold conservation. On the upper surface of the dolly the handler constructed a thermal panel structure, and put inside and outside polyurethane insulation; each dolly is cooled with an electric circuit to ensure that cold conditions are met and remain steady. Three different ranges of temperature are available, according to cargo requirement.
Jet Aviation has announced that it has achieved IS-BAH Stage II Registration for its FBO in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The San Juan FBO is a full service handling operation at one of the most convenient US points of entry for international flights. Jet Aviation acquired full ownership of the FBO at Luis Muñoz Marin International airport in February 2019.
As the first FBO in Puerto Rico to qualify for IS-BAH Stage I registration in September 2018, Jet Aviation San Juan continues to demonstrate its industry leadership and commitment to the highest safety standards.
“Between hurricanes, the ownership change, and all the new systems that came with it, our team here in San Juan has had much to contend with the past few years and yet continues to raise the bar with new offerings and premium service delivery,” said Hector Vasquez, Senior Manager FBO. “The rigorous IS-BAH Stage II audit was a first for most of the team and I couldn’t be prouder of them.”
Jet Aviation has announced that its new 8,500 square foot FBO and 30,000 square foot hangar facility at Scottsdale, Arizona is now operational. The company has been operating at Scottsdale airport since acquiring a share in the Scottsdale Jet Center that leased office space, tenant hangarage, tie-down spaces and shades in May 2019. It has since completed construction and acquired full ownership of the facility, now operating as Jet Aviation Scottsdale.
The company’s new state-of-the-art FBO and hangar facility includes a generous lobby, passenger and crew lounges, pilot snooze rooms, a conference room, meeting room as well as weather and flight planning facilities. It can accommodate aircraft up to the size of the Gulfstream 650 and the Global 6000.