Ontario International Airport unveils Escape Lounge in Terminal 2

Manchester Airport Group (MAG) subsidiary MAG USA opened an Escape Lounge in Terminal 2 at Ontario International Airport (ONT) in the US.

MAG USA agreed to open two new lounges in Terminals 2 and 4 after signing a 10-year agreement with Ontario International Airport Authority (OIAA).

The lounge in Terminal 4 is scheduled to open later this year.


Scotland’s economy gets £1.44bn boost from Glasgow Airport

Glasgow Airport adds over £1.44bn per annum to the Scottish economy and supports over 30,000 jobs, according to a new report published by economists York Aviation.

The report states that the airport will contribute £2.54bn (GVA) to the economy, support more than 43,000 jobs and handle nearly 17 million passengers per year by 2040 if it continues to grow as outlined in the master plan.

York Aviation also highlights Glasgow’s pivotal role as a gateway for exports and imports, with the airport managing more than £3.5bn in goods in 2017.


NATS trialling AI technology at Heathrow to cut delays

UK air traffic management service provider NATS commenced a trial of an AI-powered digital control tower at Heathrow Airport to reduce flight delays.

NATS invested £2.5m in a ‘digital tower laboratory’ at Heathrow to understand how technology could support the air traffic operation.

Featuring a suite of 20 ultra high definition (UHD) cameras and AI-powered technology, the digital tower will monitor aircraft and help the airport to regain 20% of lost capacity caused by low cloud and reduced visibility from the control tower.


Heathrow Airport’s expansion plan should be scrapped, says report

Plans for a third runway at Heathrow Airport should be cancelled and measures should be taken to improve airspace in London, according to a new report by London Assembly Environment Committee.

The Aircraft Noise report states that noise nuisance levels are unacceptable and calls for a halt at air traffic growth at Heathrow and London City airports.

It suggests that the expansion of the airport and the proposed third runway will adversely affect Londoners due to an increased level of noise pollution caused by aircraft.


ACI seeks industry collaboration to protect airports from drones

Airports Council International (ACI) urged aviation industry, governments, and law enforcement agencies to take collective measures to protect aircraft and airports from drones.

The trade association of airports worldwide published a list of recommendations to help airports address the risks posed by drone-related disruption to aircraft operations.

Recent chaos at London’s Gatwick and Heathrow Airports and a temporary halt to some operations at Newark Liberty International Airport caused by drone sightings have prompted ACI to discuss the best approach to preparing for and dealing with drone-related issues.


Western Sydney Airport launches search for terminal designer

Western Sydney Airport launched a two-stage competitive process to shortlist the architect who will design the new terminal building.

Expressions of interest have been solicited from companies with experience designing a comparable airport during the past five years.

Shortlisted firms will be required to reveal their design strategy, including how they will involve university students with a link to Western Sydney.


Kuwait Airport adopts Microsoft Cloud platform to boost efficiency

Kuwait International Airport will use Microsoft’s Cloud solutions of Azure to modernise its operations after a partnership was formed between the companies.

The airport, which is managed by the government’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) Passenger, has seen traffic grow steadily over the last few years.

DGCA deployed Microsoft solutions to become future ready to handle 25 million passengers per annum and deal with the frequent changes in the aviation industry.


UK plans to provide military-grade anti-drone security to all airports

The British Government is reportedly considering plans to deploy military-grade anti-drone equipment after an intrusion by illegal drones caused chaos at two of the busiest airports in the UK.

The proposed measures come after drone sightings at Gatwick Airport in December prompted the airport to halt operations for 36 hours and cancel almost 1,000 flights.

Heathrow Airport was also forced to suspend operations for almost an hour when a drone violated the airport’s airspace zone.

The government ordered its law enforcing agencies, including police, aviation and defence chiefs to cooperate with the airports to investigate the incidents and avoid any re-occurrence.

“I think that everyone would be expecting all airports to be having this detection, and deterrence effect also.”

Heathrow and Gatwick have subsequently announced that they will acquire military-grade anti-drone equipment. There are also plans to bestow additional powers to police to deal with the misuse of drones near airports.


North Luzon Airport Consortium wins Clark Airport contract

The North Luzon Airport Consortium (NLAC) won a contract to operate and manage Clark International Airport in the Philippines for 25 years.

Partners of the NLAC include Filinvest Development, JG Summit, Philippine Airport Ground Support Solutions, and Changi Airport Philippines, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Changi Airports International.

The contract was awarded by the Philippines Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA).


Screeners shortage puts US airport security in jeopardy

The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) called up national deployment officers to operate checkpoints as a shortage of screeners put airport security in peril.

The partial US federal government shutdown forced thousands of security offices to work without pay or go on sick leave.

Several airports, including Miami International Airport in Florida and George Bush International Airport in Houston, Texas, were forced to close terminals as a result.