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Winston-Salem's Tallest Buildings and Skyscrapers
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:10 am 
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They've been keeping them there since the pandemic decimated air travel. Commercial airports don't have the storage for the thousands of planes that would otherwise be in the sky.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 6:37 pm 
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zalo wrote:
The TBJ is reporting that Smith Reynolds has received a grant of $4.5 million from the CARES ACT through the Dept. of Commerce's Economic Develpmnt Admin. It will be paired with $1.6 million in local funding and will be used to repair structural damage to hangars as a result of Hurricane Michael in 2018 as well as offset additional economic adversity as brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. This grant is expected to create 200 jobs, retain 100 jobs and generate $2.5 million in private investment. Can't wait to hear when, where & who will be creating these 200 jobs. :dance:


Here's the answer to your question, zalo, from the Winston-Salem Journal. It's North State Aviation:

https://journalnow.com/news/local/govt- ... the-latest


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 7:38 pm 
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The link returns a 403 error
Never mind. It works now. Odd.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2021 9:31 am 
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That's good news, glad to hear it! Although it seems like it was just recently that North State almost went under. Don't really understand what happened there but it would appear that this new jobs projection of 200 plus their existing 100 jobs will just barely bring them back to employment levels that they had just 3/4 years ago.

I was very pleased to learn of the legislation of appropriating $30 million to the airport towards new maintenance and repair hangars and taxiways, lets hope it passes. It's well past time for Smith Reynolds to receive state/federal funds toward the improvement of the airport. :rockon: The Journal article also provided a lot of clarity as to the efforts to make Winston a center of unmanned aircraft research & development. To see the County Commission buy in on GWSI's efforts on this is very gratifying. However, this effort still seems deep in the exploratory phase. I do hope that should this effort be green lighted, that we don't have to wait an interminable number of years until we see tangible results i.e. a good number of well paying local jobs


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2021 10:08 pm 
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I also hope the city will realise the importance of the airport and it's economy by continuing to pursue the transportation corridor/rail line between Smith Reynolds, WFU, and the center city.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 10:50 am 
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Quote:
I also hope the city will realise the importance of the airport and it's economy by continuing to pursue the transportation corridor/rail line between Smith Reynolds, WFU, and the center city.

All of this is really good. And I still say that the county (and city) should support and actively seek the return of passenger service. I repeat, the Tidewater (Norfolk, VA) area (about same population as W-S, Greensboro, High Point) supports two airports with passenger service, Norfolk about same size as PTI (aka Greensboro) and Newport News - Williamsburg each airport about the same distance apart as PTI and Smith Reynolds.


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 24, 2021 9:58 pm 
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I totally agree yadkinv! From all the past comments I have read, I think almost everyone on this forum knows that the airport situation is undoubtably holding the city back. The name PTI simply must change to Winston Salem-Greensboro-High Point International Airport. When you fly to London, you don’t fly to “south-east” England, or if you fly to Paris, you don’t fly to “Ile-de-France, you fly to the freaking city! This isn’t rocket science. If your city name isn’t included in the airport name, then you simply don’t exist. I don’t understand how the people who could do something about this name change don’t seem to be able to grasp this simple concept. Said another way, Winston Salem simply doesn’t exist as a destination/departure for air travel to all the markets outside the US (and even some in the US)! All you have to do to verify this, is set your VPN to almost any country outside the US and do a search for flights to Winston Salem. There are so many times over the years, I had to explain to travelers coming here from outside the US that they have to book a flight to GSO or that they can fly to Charlotte or Raleigh and then drive here. This is a major issue, and the only way Winston Salem can force some changes is to re-open KINT to passenger service. KJFK is the most important POE on the east coast and there is no direct flight from PTI. I think it’s because Delta, American, United etc don’t want us to have the JFK connection because it would divert traffic from their hubs. I have a suggestion; we could work with Jet Blue to set up service from Smith Reynolds direct to JFK since it’s their main hub. This would essentially “give” them the airport as the only carrier! We could potentially sell the idea as a chance for Jet Blue to literally configure the entire terminal and airport area in whatever way they wanted. This would also give them access to the triad market which is around 1.6 million people (a sizeable population) and it would give Winston Salem and the rest of the triad a direct flight to their main hub. This is just an idea as a way to potentially get passenger service to Smith Reynolds and put Winston Salem back on the map! I’m sure there are many other ideas out there and turning the airport into a VTOL development center is also very cool. I just feel like we need to do something very creative to fix this problem and that’s the only idea I could come up with at this point in time and I would love to hear what everyone thinks!


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2021 7:58 am 
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I like the idea.

I agree that the GSO airport name is an issue. Downtown Winston is such a short drive to the GSO airport. Fourth Street to GSO is 23.8 miles (est: 26 minutes). By comparison,

    CLT to Lowes Companies Inc. HQ is 28 miles (est: 28 minutes).
    LAX to Downtown LA (convention center) - 16.3 miles (est: 24 min - on a Sunday morning, much longer trip any other time of day)
    RDU to Red Hat HQ - 14.7 miles (est: 23 minutes)
    RDU to Duke University - 15.9 miles (est: 20 minutes)
    Hartsfield-Jackson Airport to Coca Cola HQ - 12.5 miles (est: 14 minutes on a Sunday morning - good luck on a Monday morning)


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2021 10:34 am 
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Thank you waggonera, that Jet Blue thing is an extraordinary idea. I have decided I’m voting for you as mayor of W-S. And thank you WSBornNBred for those figures (a few of which I posted some time ago). It is certainly gratifying (to me) to see some positive posts on this matter. For so long, I’ve felt like the lone voice; not because practically everyone on this forum doesn’t support this strongly, but I suspect they believe it is fruitless to discuss because of either inability or inaction or both on the part of local officials.

I remind that in all airports nationwide the flight boards indicate Raleigh-Durham (cities same distance apart as W-S and Greensboro) yet flights to PTI are listed only as Greensboro, a serious economic (not to mention fairness) factor. I also remind that most places with more than one airport are servicing cities in the same metro area. W-S and Greensboro are in two different metro areas, which I believe enhances the need at Smith- Reynolds and might add to the problem noted that W-S does not show in many booking scenarios, a serious flaw that should alarm the most myopic local official.

One wonders that in exchange for the 2 W-S/Forsyth seats on the PTI Airport Commission some back room promises were made?


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2021 12:59 pm 
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It would seem to me, in regards to commercial service, that it would be critical to involve the movers and shakers/business and industry leaders who could utilize and sustain such a need for flights into and out of Winston-Salem. The power of the influence of leaders at HanesBrands, Flow, ReynoldsAmerican, Inmar, the two medical systems, etc.... would be no less than the Dick Reynoldses, Tom Davises, or Ralph & James Haneses of old. Though these leaders generally dock their own aircraft at Smith-Reynolds, their use of minimal service to and from WS could help increase awareness and the convenience of flying from Smith Reynolds.

I remember the last time I lived in Winston-Salem in 1999, and just before USAirways ceased its service out of Smith-Reynolds, I purposely booked a flight to Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood FL with a connection in Charlotte. I could have as easily driven to Charlotte and flown direct, but amazingly the flight with connection in Charlotte from Winston-Salem was cheaper at the time than the direct flight to Ft. Lauderdale from Charlotte. I chose to fly from Winston because I wanted to support the local airport, economy, and be another example of someone who actually liked the convenience of air service in my city (even above driving over to PTI!).

It’s going to take more than talk to change things on this matter, it’s going to take people with power and influence to step up. And it would help if more people, including the city and county leaders, let it be known the need, even desire, exists for commercial service to Winston-Salem.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2021 4:34 pm 
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I support continuing to put resources into Smith Reynolds as an air technology and support hub, but don’t see the need for commercial flights. It would be great to have it, I just don’t think it’s necessary with PTI being a half hour away. In any major metro a half hour trip to the airport is nothing. It helps us to see PTI grow. I do agree that the naming is a stupid problem that should be fixed and is the leading example of non-cooperation that currently exists in the region. It should be Greensboro-Winston-Salem International.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2021 8:28 pm 
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I grew-up near Asheville's airport and I can remember people saying, why don't we just close Asheville's airport and use Greenville-Spartanburg (GSP). Asheville's airport looked similar to Winston-Salem's airport and yes, it was fading. Thankfully, there was a strong effort to save it and keep passenger service.

The first step in bring back passenger service at Smith Reynolds Airport will be money. Asheville invested in its terminal to make it a modern and inviting place. Also, small and forgotten airports often have to pay the airlines to offer service. If you have deep enough pockets, you can talk pay the airlines to offer service to your airport, giving you the opportunity to prove your airport can support added service. It appears as if renovations are happening to the terminal. Now, we just need to locate a few million to buy service. Service to where? Where your airport connects to can make your city more attractive to certain industries. Thankfully, David Mounts is involved in a lot of things happening at the airport. He could easily make a list of cities to connect to, to make Winston-Salem attractive to tech industries the city is interested in. I do think there could be strong demand for NYC, Chicago, and maybe Atlanta and/or D.C.,? It would be nice to have a Texas city as an option. Mr. Mounts would likely know the best of the big three to have a flight to.

One of the things that has surprised me: There is strong demand for bringing back passenger service at Smith Reynolds Airport. Even among conservatives! Yes, one of the few bipartisan things you'll find in the area. It's something almost everyone in Winston-Salem seems to support. And unlike the train station, passenger service can easily return to Smith Reynolds. There is a certification or something like that involved, including security, (some one here who follows air travel more closely than me will know) and Smith Reynolds maintains all of that so it can be ready for a return of passenger airlines. Smith Reynolds could develop a niche based on the terminal building itself. If it's restored properly, it could be attractive to those who love history and maybe want to experience a small piece of air travel's glory days, when it was a bigger deal to fly and something to be excited about. I do think a restored airport terminal with a historic theme could make Smith Reynolds attractive to those wanting to fly and to young professionals who love unique cities, offering unique experiences, with great historic building stock. That would be a unique experience, if done correctly. Looking at Union Station, I think it can be done correctly in Winston-Salem. I would imagine a large number of Furniture Market attendees would prefer to fly through a marbled Art Deco meets Streamline Moderne airport, by a famous airport architect of the 1930s/40s, than an early-80s modernist structure. I think it would position Winston-Salem and its historic hotels to gain more from the region's premier spring/fall event. It may even help the Market by offering such a unique travel and design experience.

This is how it should be pitched to local business and elected leaders. How can it benefit the city and region. And if it has benefits outside the city, that can make the effort even stronger. I do believe having passenger air travel closer to western counties is another benefit that could bring more politicians and business leaders from outside the city to our side. Look how convenient this is to Surry County and Mount Airy, in helping them attract industry and retain businesses! It is a benefit to have a western airport and it doesn't have to be bigger or better than PTI. PTI can still be the top airport with more flights. This could be an option for the western Triad.

I would work to bring passenger service to a select group of cities that make Winston-Salem attractive to tech industries and maybe popular routes that do well from PTI. It would likely take some traffic away from PTI, but the region could combine the numbers and promote the combined traffic / passenger totals.

It's worth noting that Winston-Salem was asked to select a location convenient to Greensboro in the 1920s and didn't. Winston-Salem had another opportunity around 45 years ago to help select a location in the center of the Triad for PTI, but (from what I've heard) never even bothered with it. Of course if Greensboro wasn't so greedy, the Triad could have Charlotte's airport driving all three cities economies. I think it was 1957 when Greensboro had success with talking their local federally elected officials into selecting their airport over the Carolinas' leading airport in Winston-Salem, which eventually lead to Charlotte becoming the Carolinas' major airport. Imagine if all three cities would've worked together to keep Smith Reynolds Airport the state's leading airport and maybe built a modern terminal around Kernersville in the 1970s (removing the height limit over downtown Winston-Salem and making KINT easier to reach from the eastern Triad). I would imagine INT is very desirable for an International Airport. Even more interesting, Winston-Salem's efforts to use water to attract growth stopped Greensboro politicians from creating something similar to Lake Norman in Lewisville / Clemmons. Imagine a massive lake, surrounded with luxury homes and hosting major events, while being a Triad Regional Water System. A lack of water didn't stop the neighbors from growing, but wow... that lake would've become a major asset for Winston-Salem and the Triad! The cities fighting each other (both equally to blame) really is to blame for their current problems.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2021 9:37 am 
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Quote:
but don’t see the need for commercial flights. It would be great to have it, I just don’t think it’s necessary with PTI being a half hour away.


This would be true in an ordinary or normal situation. But, in this case, the way PTI is marketed and the way it is referenced on departure/arrival boards (i.e. Greensboro only) is detrimental to promoting anything in W-S and local officials should explore and remedy that situation. As F&M mentioned, there should have been built in the 1970s a Triad (dare I use a word to describe something that exists as a spatial footprint only but a differing concept depending if one is east or west or Kernersville) Airport with as others have mentioned the name Greensboro/Winston-Salem International (the hyphen in W-S has always presented a syntactical problem when describing the CSA and other references). A commemorative name should be placed in front of the two city references so the clipped version of Greensboro would not become usage as it surely would. Though I do think that is not the case with Raleigh-Durham, maybe but not so much.

And, as I pointed out some time ago on this forum the 3-charcter designation should have been changed to PTI from GSO, which is a reminder and direct reference that the airport is Greensboro. PTI was available, then assigned, but NOW IS AGAIN AVAILABLE https://www.nationsonline.org/oneworld/IATA_Codes/airport_code_list.htm#P So, if officials throughout the so-called Triad are really interested in cooperation and promoting ALL of the so-called Triad then the 3-character reference will be changed from GSO (now a misnomer) to PTI. Can't wait to hear the arguments against.

I know what you're thinking, this is a tempest in a teapot, but it is not: names are very important in many aspects of business and other relevant applications. It is no accident that this is how this was developed.

Again, W-S has an ever uphill battle because it is the largest city in the US (maybe the world) with no air service meaning conceptually, which ultimately becomes in reality in the thinking nationwide. One might indicate the sign at the airport includes W-S's name but the important references nationwide in the aviation industry and other circles use only Greensboro unlike the Raleigh-Durham situation. Can anyone offer a reason for the difference from the Raleigh-Durham nationwide references, that is, why it's Raleigh-Durham on postings but only Greensboro?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2021 11:18 am 
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yadkinv - I’ll point out that my post agrees with yours regarding the naming of PTI even going as far as calling it the number one example of non-cooperation that exists in the Triad. I also agree it would be great to have passenger service at Smith Reynolds but I simply think it’s more worthwhile to pursue fixing the name issue at PTI versus throwing money at trying to get commercial flights going at SR. Certainly would be great to have it and maybe I’m off regarding the feasibility of passenger service at SR and how intractable the folks at PTI may be regarding the name. If they continue to be unwilling to compromise on that I could be persuaded that the best option is to just go it alone.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2021 11:49 am 
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Yadkin, nice research on PTI. Have you written to the airport authority board (Allen Joines is currently chair, I think)?? If we can get him and other members of the governing board interested, they could form a subcommittee to look at the possibility and then we’d get a chance for public input. Obviously, the G’boro crowd wouldn’t like it but, between all the other Triad users, I bet we could muster a pretty strong groundswell!


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