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Old August 30th, 2011, 04:10 AM   #21
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Renderings of the new Terminal B in Bush-Intercontinental (IAH):







Learn More About Terminal B Project
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Old September 14th, 2011, 08:03 PM   #22
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Houston Aims to Grow Asian Service
Trade mission visits multiple airlines in three countries
http://www.fly2houston.com/0/3918453/0/83280D83283/
September 1, 2011

Houston aviation director Mario C. Diaz and Ma Xiuhong, deputy director of foreign affairs of the national committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, Chair of China Foreign Trade Center (WTO) and the former vice minister of commerce.

Houston Airports continue to push for additional non-stop air service to Asia. Top executives took this message directly to airline decision makers in China, South Korea and Taiwan.

“Establishing new routes to Asian destinations is a top priority for Houston,” says Houston aviation director Mario C. Diaz. “Asia is a market with virtually unlimited growth potential and we need to make sure that strong connectivity is firmly in place between our two regions.”

Diaz and other Houston representatives recently completed a 10-day trade mission, targeting a variety of destinations in Asia. The itinerary first took them to Beijing, China and then to Seoul, South Korea, and Taipei, Taiwan. (Click here to view Taiwanese news coverage regarding the Houston delegation's visit.)

At each stop, the delegation met with key decision makers to present the case that new air service to Houston would be a solid business decision.

“Business and political leaders in the Far East are not always aware of the strong Asian influence in Houston,” says Ian Wadsworth, deputy director of commercial development for the Houston Airports. “Part of our job is to make sure they understand that Houston is one of the most diverse cities in the world and one of the best markets in the U.S.”

In August, Houston received good news that China Airlines Cargo is adding a second weekly flight to its Taipei route schedule. This demonstrates that Houston is a valued market for Asian airlines.

Houston already has the highest Asian population in Texas, with one in five foreign-born Houstonians coming from Asia. According to data from the 2010 census, six percent of Houston’s citizens classify themselves as Asian and more than 90 languages are spoken throughout the Houston area.

Houston Mayor Annise Parker recognizes this strong Asian influence in Houston and has made expanded air service to the Far East a key component of her overall growth strategy. The Mayor not only mentioned the subject in her most recent State of the City Address, but has personally flown overseas in an effort to push the Houston agenda forward.
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Old September 14th, 2011, 08:06 PM   #23
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New AIT Software Enhances Passengers’ Privacy Debuts at Houston Airports
http://www.fly2houston.com/0/3918486/0/83280/
September 8, 2011





The Houston Airport System (HAS) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) debuted new software for the Advanced Image Technology (AIT) scanners currently in place at both George Bush Intercontinental (IAH) and William P. Hobby (HOU) Airports today at IAH along with a demonstration.

“IAH is excited to be one of the first airports to debut the new cutting-edge AIT software that ultimately benefits our customers by getting security results immediately,” says Mary Case, IAH general manager. “The TSA is an important partner of the Houston Airport System and together, we will enhance our customer service tremendously.”

The new software, called Automated Target Recognition, provides additional privacy protection by eliminating passenger-specific images. If anomalies are detected on a passenger, a generic, computer-generated outline of a person appears on the AIT monitor, highlighting any areas that require additional screening. (See photo on bottom right)

TSA Administrator John S. Pistole recently announced $44.8 million for the purchase of 300 millimeter wave AIT machines for deployment to airports nationwide to further strengthen security at U.S. airports.

“Advanced imaging technology is one of the best layers of security we have to address the threats of today and tomorrow,” said Pistole. “We remain committed to deploying this integral counterterrorism tool in order to ensure the highest level of security for the traveling public.”

Currently, there are nearly 500 imaging technology units at 78 airports, including millimeter wave and backscatter units, with additional unites planned for deployment this year.
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Old September 15th, 2011, 04:39 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by diablo234 View Post
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CI served IAH at one point. I'd expect to see NH with a second daily flight to NRT before seeing flights to ICN or PEK, but they're realistic goals.
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Old October 13th, 2011, 10:59 AM   #25
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Qatar Airways Cargo to Land in Houston

Houston Leads the Nation in Global Entry Program

Last edited by diablo234; October 13th, 2011 at 11:01 AM. Reason: IAH | George Bush Intercontinental Airport
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Old October 26th, 2011, 01:22 AM   #26
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Some photos of construction taking place at Hobby Airport courtesy of the Houston Chronicle.















Quote:
Construction this week at the Hobby Airport terminal will close a walkway for a year-long repair to the airport's upper-level road.

Starting Wednesday night, Hobby visitors who park in the attached parking garage will use a crosswalk on its east side - although the route may change as the construction progresses. The passenger drop-off area is moving to the second level of the attached garage during the project.
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Old October 28th, 2011, 08:11 PM   #27
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A tour of Houston Intercontinental Airport (IAH) Terminals A & B.

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Old October 28th, 2011, 11:31 PM   #28
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IAH is a great airport...
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Old November 4th, 2011, 04:51 AM   #29
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Cargolux Connects Houston and West Africa
November 1, 2011

One of the leading cargo airlines in the world is now operating freight service between Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport and Lagos, Nigeria and Accra, Ghana, two of West Africa’s strongest energy markets.

Cargolux launched operations between Houston and the African continent on October 24 with its Boeing 747-400 aircraft. In the future, the route will feature the company’s newest aircraft, the Boeing 747-8F. The next generation aircraft increases payload capacity, reduces fuel burn and also lowers noise and emission levels.

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Old November 13th, 2011, 03:14 AM   #30
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Houston to Africa Flight Set to Take Off
http://www.fly2houston.com/0/3918901/0/83280D83283/
Non-stop service to Lagos, Nigeria will begin on November 16
November 1, 2011

On November 16, Continental Airlines will launch non-stop service between Houston's George Bush Intercontinental Airport and Lagos, Nigeria.

“The Houston Airport System is excited about the arrival of this historic African route,” says Mario Diaz, the city of Houston’s aviation director. “It will be the first daily scheduled service offered between Texas and Africa and it will create growth in Houston’s energy industry, linking two energy capitals.”

Continental Airlines will utilize a Boeing 777 aircraft when the service is first launched but in the future, the route will feature Boeing’s newest aircraft, the 787 Dreamliner. The industry-changing aircraft is scheduled to be used for Continental’s flight to Lagos, as well as non-stop service between Houston and Auckland, New Zealand.

Lagos is the economic, commercial and cultural center of Nigeria, the most populous country in Africa and like Houston, is considered to be an energy hub for its home region.

President and CEO of United Continental Holdings Inc., Jeff Smisek, says the economic climate found in both regions played a big role in the airline’s decision to establish service. “This flight will link two energy capitals,” Smisek says. “And it will fill the growing demand for non-stop service between the two cities, a route which is currently not served by any other airline.”

Flying times will be approximately 11 hours eastbound and 12 hours and 30 minutes westbound. The new flight will reduce travel time between the two cities by more than four hours by eliminating any connection en route. The flight will be timed to provide convenient connections at Continental’s Houston hub to more than 100 other cities throughout the U.S., Canada, Latin America and the Pacific.

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Old November 16th, 2011, 05:52 PM   #31
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Houston gets first scheduled nonstop flight to Africa
By JENALIA MORENO, HOUSTON CHRONICLE
Published 08:10 p.m., Tuesday, November 15, 2011
http://www.chron.com/business/articl...to-2271125.php

Nigerian music, dance and snacks will greet passengers embarking Wednesday on the first scheduled daily flight between Houston and Africa.

A Continental Airlines flight connecting the two energy centers of Houston and Lagos, Nigeria, takes off Wednesday night from Bush Intercontinental Airport.

Delta Air Lines flies daily from its Atlanta hub to Lagos, but Houston's large Nigerian community and energy companies that operate in the African nation have long sought nonstop service from Houston.

'Long time coming'

"I think it's been a long time coming," said Kase Lawal, a Nigerian native who heads Houston-based Camac International Corp., which has offices in Nigeria.

He says that he and his workers often must fly through European cities to reach Lagos. He's eager to take the new flight from Houston to visit his home country.

Flying times are about 11 hours, 35 minutes eastbound and 13 hours, 20 minutes westbound. The westbound flight will include Nigerian cuisine options for passengers.

Flat-bed seats

Continental's Flight 142 departs Bush Intercontinental at 7:05 p.m. and arrives at Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos at 1:40 p.m. local time the next day.

On the return, Flight 143 departs Lagos at 11:05 p.m. and arrives in Houston at 5:25 a.m. the next day.

The flights will use Boeing 777 aircraft with 276 seats - 50 in BusinessFirst and 226 in economy. The 777 aircraft feature new, flat-bed seats in the BusinessFirst cabin.

Continental had planned to fly Boeing's 787 Dreamliner to Lagos and Auckland, New Zealand, this year. But because of production delays, Continental won't receive its first 787 until next year. Airline officials decided to postpone the Auckland service and fly the 777 aircraft to Lagos until the Dreamliner is delivered.

Continental and United Airlines each have ordered 25 of the new planes.

The two carriers merged last year but operate as subsidiaries of United Continental Holdings until the Federal Aviation Administration issues them a single operating certificate.
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Old December 8th, 2011, 09:19 PM   #32
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Double-decker jet to fly to Houston
By RONNIE CROCKER, HOUSTON CHRONICLE
Published 07:15 p.m., Wednesday, December 7, 2011
http://www.chron.com/business/articl...on-2374929.php

A mammoth double-deck jet scheduled to begin flying in and out of Houston next summer will require more than $30 million in upgrades at Bush Intercontinental Airport and should boost passenger traffic.

German carrier Lufthansa announced Wednesday that it will begin flying the Airbus A380 - the world's largest commercial airplane, with 526 passenger seats - on daily flights to and from Frankfurt beginning Aug. 1. The plane will replace the 747-400 currently used on those flights, increasing capacity by 63 percent per trip.

"It's like you're flying two aircraft with one, in a way," Lufthansa spokeswoman Christina Semmel said.

The airline said the new plane will benefit energy-related business travel by increasing capacity to Frankfurt, where Lufthansa has connections to more than 35 other energy centers.

At Bush, which will be the first Texas airport to host the A380, enthusiastic officials said renovations are already under way to prepare for the jet that is 79 feet tall with a wingspan stretching more than 261 feet, or most of the length of a football field.

Director Mario Diaz said the Houston Airport System will spend $8 million to widen runway and taxiway shoulders so the new plane's outer engines will blow exhaust over asphalt instead of grass; $7.5 million to add loading bridges at the gate to accommodate an upper deck and an extended lower deck; and $15  million to $20 million to improve the interior appearance throughout Terminal D in anticipation of more first-class and international passengers.

Waiver from FAA

Diaz said Bush has received a temporary waiver from the Federal Aviation Administration to handle the largest class of jets, including the A380, and it will spend another $30 million to $40 million to upgrade the remaining runways to secure full FAA clearance.

He said larger passenger loads are expected to add $20 million to $30 million to the local economy each year in the form of new jobs catering to the travelers and increased revenue from parking and on-site concessions.

Lufthansa, which began using the A380 in June 2010 for flights to Tokyo, now has eight of the aircraft in operation, including flights to Miami. Beginning in the spring, the airline will restart A380 service to San Francisco and New York's Kennedy Airport. Houston will be the fourth U.S. city served by the plane through Lufthansa.

Elsewhere, Semmel said, the A380 has attracted more passengers per flight while costing about the same to operate because of improved fuel efficiency.

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Old December 8th, 2011, 09:29 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by diablo234 View Post
It is unlikely that Hobby will get international flights because of the US customs facility there is not large enough to handle any passenger traffic except charter planes.
Actually, Hobby has plans for passenger immigration and customs that can be implemented if and when an airline wants to offer international flights. The airport has been having conversations with Southwest about Southwest's possible plans for international service now that they have acquired AirTran.
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Old December 8th, 2011, 10:57 PM   #34
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Bush Terminal B

Anyone have any info on when the work will start on Terminal B?
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Old January 10th, 2012, 04:53 PM   #35
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George Bush Intercontinental Airport Welcomes Cathay Pacific Airways Boeing 747-8 Freighter to Houston
http://www.fly2houston.com/0/3919153/0/83280/

HOUSTON, December 22– The newest addition to the Cathay Pacific Airways fleet – the Boeing 747-8 Freighter - marked a significant milestone as it touched down at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston this week. The airline’s first ever Boeing 747-8F aircraft landing in Texas will be a repeat performance as it is a dedicated aircraft on the cargo route network.

“I am thrilled to welcome Cathay Pacific’s 747-8F to Houston and the timely addition in the airline’s fleet signifies the importance and increasing volume of trade between Houston and Hong Kong,” said Mario C. Diaz, Director of the Houston Airport System. "Houston continues to be a vital international cargo hub in the global network thanks to the strength of the Texas economy as we connect local companies providing goods and services in the energy, medical and manufacturing sectors to emerging and expanding markets globally."

One of the keys to Houston’s success is its strategic geographical location in the Americas with excellent reach to Latin America and major markets in the United States, with 29 percent of all freight from Houston destined for Asia with a trade value of $3.5 billion annually. As the year draws to a close, the Houston Airport System expects it will set a new record for air cargo as Bush Intercontinental Airport is expected to handle more air cargo in 2011 than it has in any year since the airport opened in 1969.

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Old January 10th, 2012, 04:56 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by Green Country View Post
Anyone have any info on when the work will start on Terminal B?
I am guessing it will start later this year. Right now they are working on financing.

Learn More About Terminal B Project
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Old January 12th, 2012, 10:38 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by diablo234 View Post
I am guessing it will start later this year. Right now they are working on financing.

Learn More About Terminal B Project
Apparently, work is about to begin. As of January 6, the southwest flight station (Flight Station 7) (aka the southwest banjo), was closed, in preparation for its demolition.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 08:26 PM   #38
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Houston's Big Airport To Undergo Big Changes
January 23, 2012
by Pat Hernandez

http://app1.kuhf.org/articles/132736...g-Changes.html

Ground was broken on Phase 1 of a three-phase redevelopment project. The $160 million renovation will create a new Terminal B south concourse dedicated to regional jet operations.

Mario Diaz is the director of aviation for the Houston Airport System.

"It's clear, that an aesthetically appealing terminal is important, and that's why the work that we commence today is and will make a difference to the importance of the flying public. And it requires that we make the investments that are so needed in order to complete the process and the trip for the passenger."

United Continental Holdings is a major player in the terminal renovation. Pete McDonald is United Airlines executive veepr and chief operations officer. He says since Houston is the airline's largest hub city, Terminal B was in need of a massive makeover.

"This project will enable us to increase its size, improve the concessions, improve the efficiency for us, gives us the opportunity to expand in the future. The 787 is coming to United mid-year, and one of our first routes will be Houston-Auckland, which we're very excited about."

He says the investment in the Houston hub will allow the airline to accommodate more customers and more aircraft types, provide new amenities for travelers, and improve efficiencies. The event marks the first ground breaking for the new United. Kay Gebo with United says the employment rolls will increase significantly:

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Old January 31st, 2012, 07:14 PM   #39
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Houston airport's first charter to Cuba takes off Thursday
By Ronnie Crocker
Published 07:10 p.m., Monday, January 30, 2012
http://www.chron.com/business/articl...ff-2849358.php

The first Cuba-bound charter flight from Bush Intercontinental Airport departs Thursday with a Houston-based group taking advantage of relaxed travel rules that went into effect last year.

The flight, aboard a Miami-based 737, will include 80 passengers with visas specified for "people-to-people" exchanges, the Houston Airport System said. The group will fly into Havana and return to Houston on Sunday.

The Airport System issued a statement calling the trip "a wonderful, historic opportunity" that could help Bush Intercontinental with its goal of becoming a major "gateway" to Cuba.

"While we do not have word today on any other charters over the near term, this is the first of what we expect will be many flights between Houston and Cuba as IAH becomes the gateway of choice for travelers authorized to fly to Cuba by the U.S. government," the statement said.

No information was released on the travelers, who asked not to be publicly identified, or what they plan to do in Cuba.

The Obama administration a year ago announced it would ease travel prohibitions from the half-century-old embargo to increase family-related travel and trips by authorized groups in a small number of specific areas, including agriculture, medicine, education and religious activity.

Other restrictions remain in effect. For example, it is still illegal for Americans to vacation on the Caribbean island.

Last March, Bush Intercontinental was added to the list of U.S. airports that could handle flights to Cuba.

Laura Murillo, president of the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, said she was not aware of the plans for the Thursday flight, but she said the chamber welcomes "anything that can help our business community move around and get around to the places they want to visit."

Marazul Charters, a major player in arranging legal U.S.-to-Cuba flights, set up the Thursday flight.

The airplane belongs to Miami Air International, a carrier licensed to fly to Cuba. CEO Ross Fischer said he could not comment on his clients for Thursday's trip, but said the company is interested in increasing flights to the island from Houston.

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Old February 6th, 2012, 10:03 AM   #40
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Southwest Airlines considers international flights from Hobby to Mexico
by Gabe Gutierrez / KHOU 11 News
http://www.khou.com/news/local/South...138160864.html
khou.com
Posted on January 26, 2012 at 5:16 PM
Updated Friday, Jan 27 at 10:16 AM

HOUSTON – Southwest Airlines confirmed Thursday that it’s considering flights to Mexico from Hobby Airport.

The flights would be operated by AirTran Airways, which Southwest recently acquired. The plans are still in the very early stages, said Olga Romero, a Southwest spokesperson.

“Southwest Airlines has recently expressed interest in conducting international operations from Houston,” Mario Diaz, the aviation director for the Houston Airport System, said in a written statement. “We are currently evaluating the request made by Southwest and have agreed to give it fair and full consideration."

The new flights could increase Hobby Airport’s profile. Currently, only George Bush Intercontinental Airport offers international flights in Houston.

"Our airports are important, are very important to us and anything we can do to increase traffic at our airports is good for the region and good for the City of Houston," Mayor Annise Parker said.

But there would be some challenges. Right now, Hobby's not ready for international travel.

"There's nothing we would need to do to the airport, per se,” Parker said. “But we would need the presence of customs and immigration -- and that would depend on the cooperation of the federal government."

Southwest wouldn’t provide details of specific international destinations from Houston, stressing that the talks were preliminary.

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