Asian fusion restaurant comes to Tampa
HMSHost has added P.F. Chang’s to its F&B offering at Tampa International Airport (TPA). It describes the new addition as the perfect blend of Asian and American cultures that has a reputation for quality cuisine.
Located in TPA’s Main Terminal, dishes at P.F. Chang’s are said to be influenced by its ‘Farm-to-Wok’ food philosophy which essentially means the daily cooking of recipes made with fresh ingredients and “holding the highest respect for the power of a fiery wok”.
“The commitment to quality that P.F. Chang’s follows is part of why the brand is so widely loved and respected,” says HMSHost executive vice president of business development, Derryl Benton.
The big IT spend
With ACI forecasting a further increase in global airport industry revenues to $158 billion in 2016, absolute IT spending by gateways is likely to surpass the $9 billion mark this year, according to SITA’s latest Airport IT Trends Survey.
In terms of specific investments over the next three years, the survey reveals that passenger self-service continues to dominate with two-thirds of airports planning major IT projects in this area.
It claims that the growing influence of mobile is also evident with nearly every airport worldwide (90%) undertaking either a major programme or a trial project related to mobile apps.
And with the greater availability of data from both passengers and business operations, half of airports worldwide are planning to capitalise on it with major business intelligence initiatives over the next three years, says the 2016 survey.
Other initiatives said to be picking up momentum include interactive wayfinding and identity management using biometrics with 34% (26% in 2014) and 24% (14% in 2014) of airports respectively, planning major projects.
The survey adds that the worldwide adoption of newer technologies by airports is progressing, with some such as cloud computing starting to reach maturity.
“The proportion of airports undertaking major programmes in this area over the next three years has remained at 45% since our last survey, while the proportion of airports with no plans has dropped only marginally from 21% to 19% of airports,” states the survey.
“On the other hand, sensing technologies, such as beacons, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi, which gauge the movement of people and assets around the airport are attracting strong interest.
“The adoption of contactless mobile technology Near Field Communication (NFC), remains subdued with only 10% of airports planning a serious deployment, down from the 14% of airports seen last year. Nevertheless, a sizeable proportion (43%) are assessing the technology with small scale evaluation projects.”
A much more recent development is digital tags to replace the paper-based tags used for most check-in baggage today.
Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow
Oshkosh Airport Products has sold and delivered two Oshkosh H-Series Single Engine Blower vehicles to the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC), operator of Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport (MSP) and six general aviation airports in the region.
The vehicles will be placed into service in time for the upcoming snow season at Lake Elmo and Crystal airports, two of the MAC’s general aviation airports located near the Twin Cities.
“We unveiled the H-Series Single Engine blower earlier this spring at the Snow Symposium, and are honoured to have already sold and delivered the first two units to one of the largest and most respected airport systems in the nation,” enthuses Jeff Resch, Oshkosh Airport Products Group vice president and general manager.
“The Single Engine Blower is a versatile machine, and we are seeing a growing amount of interest in the vehicle by airports large and small.”
Chuck Kanuit – who oversees maintenance for 400 vehicles in his role as MAC’s equipment superintendent – enthuses: “We’ve wanted Oshkosh to build a single engine blower for our reliever airports, and we got involved in the design from a very early stage.
“We’re already familiar with much of the Single Engine Blower’s componentry and electronics from our other H-Series vehicles; this will be a big help when it comes to parts and maintenance. Our operators are pretty excited, although we’re not really thinking about winter quite yet!”
Latin lounges for Plaza Premium
Rio de Janeiro’s Tom Jobim International Airport has become the first gateway in South America to open a Plaza Premium Lounge.
The airport currently has Plaza Premium Lounges in International Departures and Domestic Departures and will open a third in Arrivals in October.
Opened in conjunction with airport operator, RIOgaleão, the move is part of an initiative to enhance the experience for travellers departing, transiting and arriving at Rio de Janeiro.
According to Plaza Premium Lounge, all three new facilities will offer a sense of place courtesy of their vibrant Carioca design, which aims to rekindle memories of the Copacabana beach and other landscapes of the city.
On the menu
AIRMALL has added a Starbucks and Steak ‘n Shake by Biglari outlet to its pre-security line-up at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport.
“Starbucks and Steak ‘n Shake are welcome sights for travellers looking for a quick treat on-the-go,” enthuses Brett Kelly, vice president of AIRMALL Maryland.
“We are very pleased to bring these well-known national brands, operated by local Maryland companies, to the AIRMALL at BWI Marshall.”
BWI Marshall’s newest Starbucks has opened on the lower level in the Southwest Airlines baggage claim area, offering hot and cold drinks and sweet and savory snacks from the bakery.
Also open in the Main Terminal Food Court is Steak ‘n Shake by Biglari. Famous for the 100% beef steakburgers and hand-dipped milkshakes that gave the restaurant its name, customers can also enjoy specialty items like the Frisco Melt, Classic Footlong, Grilled Chicken or Chicken Fingers.
Clamping down on noise
Heathrow has selected Brüel & Kjær to deliver, install and service 50 new noise monitoring terminals at and around the UK’s busiest gateway.
A mix of permanent and portable terminals will provide unattended sound level monitoring to accurately and reliably measure, record, process, store and transmit noise data to Heathrow’s Airport Noise and Operations Management system, ANOMS.
The portable terminals will be used to deliver continuous noise monitoring for shorter-term projects. Both types are specifically designed for continuous outdoor use.
According to Brüel & Kjær, the units will automatically transfer-trusted data that can provide noise impact insights to both airport decision makers and the community.
Matt Gorman, Heathrow’s director of sustainability and environment, says: “These monitors will allow Heathrow and our local residents to better understand the impact of aircraft noise in local areas.”
Brüel & Kjær’s airport product manager, Matthew Barry, says: “We’re delighted to continue helping Heathrow work toward achieving its commitments to the community.”
Location: Jakarta Seletan, Indonesia
Contact: Brendan Martin, managing partner
Aeon Associates is a leading provider of innovative, independent aviation consulting and advisory services. Whether an operator, lessor, investor or support services provider, our global reach, regional knowledge and industry experience assists our partners in navigating new markets and achieving success.
Location: New York, NY, USA
Contact: Darrell Brantley, business development manager – airports, North America
Park Assist is a business intelligence technology company that utilises cameras to enhance the efficiency and profitability of parking facilities through guidance, license plate recognition, surveillance and its premium-parking feature. Our M4 and L4 camera systems improve the parking experience in 24 countries worldwide.
Lamar Alliance Airport Advertising
Location: Las Vegas NV, USA
Contact: Shauna Forsythe, VP business development, airports
Lamar Airport Advertising creates custom advertising programmes for airports nationwide. Integrating the latest technologies, as well as local and national sales, Lamar achieves the most revenue possible for our airports while enhancing each airport’s individual ambiance. Specialities include digital, branding, sponsorship and marketing programmes. Lamar’s airport campaigns reach over 135 million passengers annually.