Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport's new automated train made its first official journey on Monday.
Sent on its way by Phoenix Mayor, Greg Stanton, the PHX Sky Train, travelled on the track between the East Economy Parking train station and its maintenance facility.
“Today represents a major milestone with the PHX Sky Train,” enthused Stanton. “Each day brings us closer and closer to completing this vital project. The future success of Sky Harbor is the future success of our City.”
Scheduled to open in early 2013, the new rail link will initially transport passengers between the regional light rail system, Sky Harbor’s largest parking area and Terminal 4, which handles 80% of the US gateway's traffic.
However, if all goes to plan, it will serve all of Phoenix Sky Harbor's terminals by early 2015, and there plans to connect to the Rental Car Center by 2020.
It will operate seven days a week, 365 days a year, and will be free of charge.
“Today’s test run is a visible sign that the PHX Sky Train project is on track and will soon deliver a whole new level of service to our customers,” says aviation director, Danny Murphy.
The train brings with it many new amenities, including baggage check-in services, boarding pass kiosks and pet parks at the stations.
Trains will arrive and depart every three to four minutes, and it will only be a two minute ride between the East Economy Parking train station and Terminal 4.