Business View Magazine September 2018

180 181 LUBBOCK PRESTON SMITH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AT A GLANCE LUBBOCK PRESTON SMITH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT WHAT: A commercial and general aviation airport WHERE: Lubbock, Texas WEBSITE: departments/airport 100 percent self-sufficient. Currently, the Airport is home to two freight airlines: FedEx and UPS, and three commercial passenger airlines: Ameri- can, Southwest, and United. The Airport also hosts two full-service FBOs - Lubbock Aero and Chapar- ral Jet Center; an avionics company - Condor Avi- onics; a flight school - Hub City Aviation Academy; and a few other non-aviation businesses. According to Airport Director, Kelly L. Campbell, the last decade has seen some major capital im- provements to the airfield’s runways at a cost of approximately $100 million. “The two commercial service runways used to intersect,” she reports. “So, about ten years ago, the FAA made the deter- mination that we had to de-couple those run- ways. The north/south runway is 11,500 feet and the east/west runway is 8,003.When we de-cou- pled, we moved the east/west runway 2,000 feet to the east. So, it didn’t change the length of the runway, it just relocated it –we demolished one end and expanded it on the other and then completely rehabilitated the whole length of it. We also extended the parallel taxiway.When we finished that project, we moved to the north/ south runway and completely rehabilitated the battle. These “silent wings” were used extensively in the D-Day invasion to free Europe and also in many Pacific Theater operations. The South Plains Army Airfield grew to be the largest glider training facility in the world. Military use of South Plains ended on December 1, 1947, and the Airport was returned to the local government for civil use. Commercial airline service began in 1945 with a flight to Dallas operated by Braniff Airways. Pioneer Airlines, Continental Airlines, and Trans-Texas Airlines soon began serving Lubbock, as well, and a new terminal was built in 1950. In 1966, Continental Airlines was the first to bring jet service to the Airport and soon Braniff and Texas International fol- lowed. In 1976, a new passenger terminal was dedicated which was expanded to its present size in 1986. The Airport covers 3,000 acres and has three run- ways, 156-based aircraft, and sees approximately 80,000 operations a year. It is owned by the City of Lubbock, which employs 49 full-time workers, and is