Airport Check-in: Detroit seeks rail system, new runway

Detroit Metro has unveiled a wish list of projects, including an airport rail system, a new runway and bigger terminals. The airport based its plans on projections that its passenger traffic will grow 67% in the next 20 years to about 60 million.

The rail system would connect the McNamara Terminal with the North Terminal, which is under construction and scheduled to open in late 2008. It will also connect to a planned consolidated rental car facility and possibly link to a regional rail system that is being considered by local authorities.

The new runway would be the airport's seventh. The airport is also considering lengthening Concourses B and C in the McNamara Terminal.

To help pay for the projects, the airport is urging Congress to raise the passenger facility charge limit to $7 a ticket from the current $4.50. Northwest, the airport's largest tenant, opposes funding the rail system using passenger facility charges, airline spokesman Dean Breest says.


Artwork begins sprucing up new terminal

Indianapolis International has installed its latest artwork at the yet-to-open midfield terminal.

Made by sculptor Dale Enochs, Elemental Indiana is a bronze-and-stone sculpture that depicts earth, water, fire and air. Enochs uses limestone quarried near Bloomington, Ind., where the artist lives.

The airport plans to spend about $4 million to install 16 artworks in the new terminal, which is scheduled to open in late 2008. Total cost of the terminal: $1.1 billion.

The first one, a glass mural by British artist Martin Donlin, has already been installed.


More good eating landing soon

Travelers will see new sit-down restaurants at Boston Logan's Terminal B this month. Todd English's Bonfire, a steakhouse, has already opened.

Legal C Bar, a seafood restaurant, will open later this month.

BAA Boston, the airport's food concessionaire, will also open several grab-and-go places this month: UFood Grill (health foods), Ryo Asian Fusion (sushi), Cosi (sandwiches), Villa Pizza and McDonald's.

The airport is spending about $12 million to upgrade concessions at its busiest terminal, used by American, US Airways, Alaska and Air Canada.


New terminal scheduled for 2009

Niagara Falls International Airport plans to award a construction contract soon for its new $27.5 million main terminal.

The 65,000-square-foot terminal, to be completed in 2009, will be three times larger than the building it will replace and have two gates.

The exterior was designed to reflect Niagara Falls' water flow.


Get your tech toys here

Dallas/Fort Worth will sponsor a technology fair at its terminals to drum up more business for its vendors. Tech items are some of the best sellers at airport shops.

About 25 companies, including Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile, Samsung and Clear Channel, will participate. The event will begin Tuesday and last until the end of the year.


Southwest fliers get cruise-ship perk

Cruise passengers flying Southwest Airlines from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood Airport can now check bags and receive boarding passes on their ship.

The service, offered by Orlando-based Bags To Go, covers all cruise lines at the Port of Miami or Port Everglades.

Every Monday, we report on the latest news in airports across the USA. See something noteworthy in your travels? E-mail your suggestions to