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Pittsburgh International Airport , formerly Greater Pittsburgh Airport, Greater Pittsburgh International Airport and commonly referred to as Pittsburgh International, is a joint civil-military international airport located in the Pittsburghmarker suburb of Findlay Townshipmarker, approximately west of downtown Pittsburghmarker at Exit 53 of I-376 and the Northern Terminus of PA Turnpike 576 (Future I-576). It is owned and operated by the Allegheny County Airport Authority which also operates the Allegheny County Airportmarker. PIT is primarily a passenger airport serving the Pittsburgh metropolitan area, providing 158 non-stop flights per day to 38 destinations via 13 airlines. It also serves as the home of Pittsburgh Air Reserve Stationmarker, a combined facility of the Air Force Reserve Command and the Air National Guard, providing aerial refueling, air mobility and tactical airlift support to the U.S. Air Force and other U.S.marker Department of Defensemarker activities. Finally, the airport also has a robust air cargo facility and supports extensive general aviation operations.

PIT is the second busiest passenger airport in Pennsylvania and 47th busiest in the United States, serving 8,710,291 passengers in 2008 on 167,729 aircraft operations. The airport has the longest runways of a commercial airport in Pennsylvaniamarker at 11,500 feet. Until 2004, US Airways operated its largest hub at PIT. As of 2008, the airline remains PIT's largest carrier (handling 33 percent of passengers). Also, Trans World Airlines operated a hub at the old airport from the 1960's to 1985. Southwest Airlinesmarker began service at the airport in May 2005 and is currently the second largest airline in Pittsburgh with nonstop service to 7 destinations and more than 20 daily flights. The airline has numerous times indicated an interest in expanding at the airport, however Southwest has slowed all expansion due to the 2008-2009 economic slowdown and high airport costs. Once Northwest Airlines is fully integrated with Delta, the combined airline will surpass Southwestmarker as the airport's second largest carrier by daily departures, which will average 31 per day compared with Southwest's 22 per day. Even with all its recent cuts, US Airways will likely still remain the airport's dominant carrier by both passengers carried and daily departures, which currently averages just over 50 per day. US Airways currently utilizes 10 gates, more than any other airline at PIT, followed by Delta which operates 5 gates.

The airport offers service to the United States, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, and Europe. Mainline passenger aircraft that regularly visit the airport include the Boeing 717, Boeing 737, and Boeing 757; the Airbus A319, Airbus A320, and Airbus A321; the Douglas DC-9, MD80, and MD90; and the Embraer E-190. Widebody passenger aircraft have not served the airport regularly since US Airways ended its transatlantic Boeing 767 and Airbus A330 service to Frankfurt, London, and Paris. US Airways' Boeing 767's were also used on some high density domestic routes. On occasion, Delta Air Lines' Boeing 767-300s are filled in for the 757 flights to Paris and Atlanta. No Boeing 747's have served the airport since British Airways ended service to London Gatwickmarker on Oct. 31, 1999. Nonstop transatlantic service resumed on June 3, 2009 when Delta Air Lines began flights to Parismarker. The new service operates 5 days a week and was made possible by Delta's successful joint-venture with Air France.

PIT occupies more than , making it the fourth largest airport by land area owned in the nation, behind Denver International Airportmarker, Dallas-Fort Worth International Airportmarker and Orlando International Airportmarker. It is so large that both Chicago's O'Haremarker and Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jacksonmarker could comfortably fit within the airport's land area.

PIT has been frequently recognized for its quality in meeting travelers' needs. OAG Worldwide listed the facility to its short list of the world's best airports for four consecutive years. The market research leader, JD Power and Associates named PIT among the top five airports in its two most recent customer satisfaction surveys. Conde Nast Traveler's Magazine named PIT the best in the United States and third in the world in its 2000 People's Choice Award.

History

Until the beginning of World War II, Moon Township, PAmarker was mostly a rural agricultural area. It was too far from downtown Pittsburgh to be considered the "suburb" that it is today, although it was served solely by Pittsburgh media and state/federal services. In the early 1920s, John A. Bell of Carnegiemarker purchased a number of small farms in Moon and established a major commercial dairy farm on his of land. He was bought out by Mr. and Mrs. E.E. Rieck and C.F. Nettrour, owners of the established "Rieck's" Dairy, who doubled the number of cattle at the farm.

By 1940, the United States was becoming involved in World War II. The Works Progress Administration (WPA) identified that the Pittsburgh area needed a military airport to defend the industrial wealth of the area and to provide a training base and stop-over facility. The agricultural expanses of Moon Townshipmarker were attractive to the early airport planners in the city. The WPA bought the Bell Farm and began construction of the runways.

In 1944, Allegheny County officials proposed to expand the military airport with the addition of a commercial passenger terminal in order to relieve the Allegheny County Airportmarker, which was built in 1926 and whose capacity was quickly becoming insufficient to support the growing demand for air travel. Ground was broken on the new airport on July 18, 1946. The new terminal building would eventually cost $33 million to build and was built exclusively by Pittsburgh-area companies. The new airport, christened as Greater Pittsburgh Airport (renamed Greater Pittsburgh International Airport in 1972 upon the opening of the International Arrivals Building) opened on May 31, 1952. The first flight occurred on June 3, 1952. In its full year of operation in 1953, over 1.4 million passengers used the terminal. At that time, "Greater Pitt" was considered "modern" and spacious. In fact, the airport was the largest in the United States, second only to Idlewild Airport (now JFK Airport) in New York when it was completed 5 years later.

The airport was designed by a local architect named Joseph W. Hoover. One of the primary features of his style is the use of simple, exposed concrete, steel, and glass materials. The terminal building was constructed in "stepped" levels: the first floor extended farther than the second, the second floor extended farther than the third, etc. Such a design meant that the uncovered roof of the lower level could then be used as an observation deck. In addition to the observation desks, the rounded "Horizon Room" was designed on the fourth floor with a commanding view of the airport runways. The interior of the terminal building was designed in the International Style, as was the exterior. One of the most memorable features of the lobby was the large compass laid in the floor with the green and yellow-orange terrazzo. The lobby also included shops and services for travelers. A mobile by Alexander Calder was another decorative feature of the lobby. The mobile currently hangs in the center core of the new airside terminal, and a re-creation of the compass was installed in the new terminal at an exhibit dedicated to old "Greater Pitt."

The first five airlines of the Greater Pittsburgh Airport were TWA, Capital Airlines (later part of United), Northwest, All American (later Allegheny Airlines, then USAir, and finally US Airways), and Eastern Airlines.

In 1959, the east dock was added to the terminal as air travel became more popular. On July 25, 1959, TWA introduced the first scheduled commercial jet aircraft service (Boeing 707) to Pittsburgh. With the longer range of jet engines, international air travel was more practical. By 1969, the airport sought to become an "international" airport. Ground was broken for the new International Wing, west of the original terminal building, on July 8, 1970. The International Wing opened in 1972 to accommodate federal inspection services and other requirements for international travel.

From the 1960's to about 1985, Trans World Airlines operated a hub out of PIT. Destinations included major and secondary US Cites, London and Frankfurt.

In 1972, rotunda were added to the end of each dock to further expand the number of gates at the terminal. In the later 1970s, significant growth in regional air travel created a need for additional gates at the terminal. In 1980, the South East Dock was opened. Even with all the expansions, the terminal could not meet the needs of modern air travel, and in 1987, with the financial backing of USAir (the most dominant carrier in Pittsburgh at the time), ground was broken on construction of a brand new terminal.

In 1985, the first Transatlantic flight service on an international airline came to Pittsburgh. British Airways started service in 1985 using Boeing 747-200 aircraft. The initial route flew from Pittsburgh to London-Heathrowmarker with a stop in Philadelphiamarker. The stop point was changed to Washingtonmarker. Then, a non-stop flight to London-Gatwickmarker, with a change to London-Heathrowmarker again with a stop in Montrealmarker. The route remained a non-stop service to London-Gatwickmarker. The airline ended service at the airport completely on October 31, 1999. In 2000, US Airways picked up the route to London-Gatwickmarker but cancelled it in 2004 due to extensive downsizing of the airport.

On October 1, 1992, the new Midfield Terminal opened and all operations transfer over from the old terminal overnight. (The old terminal remained standing for some years after, continuing to house a few operations offices; it was demolished in 1999.) The new terminal was equipped with numerous innovative, state-of-the-art features at the time, including an "AirMall" that featured shops for passengers to browse in, and "landside-airside" terminal construction which eliminated the need for connecting passengers to go through security again. The airport's capacity is one of its most valuable assets. A model to other airports around the world, the design of the terminal was planned to simplify aircraft movement on the airfield and ease pedestrian traffic to the gates.

The airport became stagnant through the 1990s, with USAir (later US Airways) concentrating on expanding at Philadelphia and Charlotte/Douglas International Airportmarker. The downturn in the economy at the start of the 21st century, the September 11th attacks, and high operating costs at the airport put the US Airways hub in Pittsburgh at an economic disadvantage. The airline announced in 2004 that it would be substantially reducing its operations at Pittsburgh by shifting its primary hub to Philadelphia. By 2005, the airline had only about 170 flights per day to and from Pittsburgh, most of them domestic, compared with 542 before the reduction, including many international flights to London, Paris, and Frankfurt.

In October 2007, US Airways announced that it had selected Pittsburgh as the site of its new flight operations center, which will be the nerve center of the airline's 1,400 daily mainline flights . This center opened November 12, 2008, and is home to approximately 600 employees, a third of the region's total US Airways work base.

On March 25, 2009 ground was broken on the new PIT International LogisticsCentre, an industrial park at the intersection of Business Route 60 and International Drive near the airport. Construction will begin in the fall of 2009. When finished, there will be nearly of "Class A Warehouse which will include distribution and air cargo space. It will bring much business opportunity to the southwestern PA area.

Recent

The airport has seen greatly reduced traffic due to US Airways' cutbacks. The airport's operator, the Allegheny County Airport Authority, has attempted to attract new service to the airport--low-cost and international carriers in particular—in hopes of bringing more passengers, with some success. AirTran Airways, which initially had trouble competing in Pittsburgh after beginning service in 2000, was finally able to successfully expand Pittsburgh offerings after the US Airways' cuts. In 2003, USA3000 Airlines began service to Florida and has recently expanded to include international destinations in the Caribbean. Southwest Airlinesmarker began service to Pittsburgh in May 2005; broke US Airways's monopolies on Tampa, Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Philadelphia; and brought more competition to the Chicago and Orlando markets. JetBlue Airways began service on June 30, 2006. JetBlue broke US Airways' monopoly on Boston and brought more competition to the New York market. Myrtle Beach Direct Air began service in March 2007 and broke US Airways's monopoly on Myrtle Beach. This addition of new, mostly low-cost carriers has increased the airport's origin/destination traffic from 6.1 million in the late 1990s to 8.2 million in 2007, causing the airport to add additional parking.

PIT opened a new Military Comfort Center located at Gate A4 to serve traveling military and their families. The center began service on November 18, 2008.

US Airways

Concourse A, formerly used as a hub for US Airways, has been partially walled off to help offset the loss of US Airways.
US Airways has a rich history in Pittsburgh. It has served Pittsburgh since 1939 . Its first brand, All American Aviation, started in 1939 in Pittsburgh. The airline served the Ohio Valley from Pittsburgh. In 1949, All American Aviation became All American Airways when it started passenger service with its hub in Pittsburgh . 1953 brought a new name, Allegheny Airlines . It was one of the first airlines at Greater Pittsburgh Airport when it opened. In 1979 US Air was formed with its hub at the airport. In 1996, when the airline became US Airways, it had about 515 daily departures from PIT making the airport its largest hub with flights to Europe and North America.

In 2000, US Airways and its regional partners boarded more than 8.6 million passengers at PIT alone.

In 2003, US Airways approached Pittsburgh over the concern of operating fees. Since US Airways was the largest carrier at the airport, and the head of the airport's operation, they requested lower operated fees. PIT refused , and US Airways threatened to move all major operations to Philadelphiamarker and Charlottemarker, which they did. US cut many flights including all flights to Europe (London [Gatwick], Frankfurt, and Paris[Charles de Gaulle]) and many flights in North America. Its hub status was dropped in 2004. In 2007, US Airways discontinued service to Baltimore, Seattle, San Diego, Buffalo, and Altoona and reduced service to Albany, Erie, Newark, Indianapolis, New York's LaGuardia Airport, Chicago's O'Hare Airport, Philadelphia, Providence, Syracuse, and Toronto.

In January 2008, US Airways' steady decline from a prominent hub, to a secondary hub, to a focus city, saw its days numbered with the imposition of only 68 daily flights. On this day, it was a focus city no more and was christened a US Airways' destination. CEO Doug Parker stated "unfortunately our ability to operate profitably from Pittsburgh has been sharply eroded over the past few years and the hub lost more than $40 million over the past 12 months alone." Today US Airways operates only 10 gates on the B concourse. Concourses A & B, where the airline once controlled all 50 gates, have each been truncated (walled-off) with a total of 26 gates being closed. The gates were closed as part of a cost cutting strategy to offset US Airways' decline.

US Airways announced more flight cuts that took effect in early January 2009 as part of a reduction in capacity due to higher fuel costs. All Florida markets (Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa) as well as Indianapolis being eliminated from its Pittsburgh schedule. US Airways later discontinued service to Harrisburg and Richmond, Virginia and reduced Los Angeles and San Francisco to once daily. In early March 2009, the airline's three daily flights to Newark were also eliminated, leaving Continental as the only airline serving that route. These moves have left the airline with an average of 50 daily departures to only 12 destinations. Furthermore, in March 2009, the airline carried only 28% of about 196,000 passengers, their lowest percentage ever at the airport.

In April 2009, US Airways again announced more flight cuts, ending service to Los Angelesmarker and San Franciscomarker. Two days before the route cancellation, United Airlines announced that they would be starting daily nonstop service to the two cities starting August 18. US Airways even once served 767s on these routes when the airline had a hub there. Also in 2009, US Airways marked their 70th anniversary in Pittsburgh.

Former destinations

Global Flight Operations Center

Since 1997, US Airways has maintained it's OpsCenter in the metro Pittsburgh area. After the merger with AmericaWest the airline had two centers both with limited (pre-merger) capacity, the other being America West's inherited center near Phoenix. Pittsburgh International won a three way competition between Phoenixmarker and Charlottemarker for the new combined airlines state of the art operations center.

The $25 million, 72,000 square foot facility on a far corner of Airport property went "live" at 12:01 AM (EST) on November 12th 2008 with the permanent sign off of the old Pittsburgh and Phoenix facilities. With it's expanded staff of over 600 highly skilled specialists it coordinates all arrivals, departures and inflights in the global US Airways system 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.[35106]

Future plans

Airport officials are now constructing a new baggage sorting facility on the grounds where the northern most arm of the old E gates was located. The arm was demolished early in 2007 to make room for the new North Matrix Baggage Sorting Facility, which went into operation during the Spring of 2009. The new facility will be used by US Airways. By adding the new facility, the current screening machines on the ticketing level near US Airways' ticket counter will not be needed. Everything will be screened "in- line" similar to the southern end of the ticketing level served by all the other airlines.

Dick's Sporting Goods announced that they will be relocating their headquarters to Findlay Township on airport grounds. They have outgrown their current facility located just a few miles southeast of the airport near Robinson Town Centre. The new complex will have a hangar and taxiway access for private aircraft.

ACAA considers expanding access to its automated baggage sorting system.

The Pittsburgh International Airport will receive 10 million dollars in federal stimulus money that will be used to rehabilitate runway 14/32, one of 4 runways at Pittsburgh. This runway is critical for night time arrivals and is preferred for noise abatement procedures. The money will be used to rehab the pavement, make grading improvements and update the pavement markings. Airport signing and lighting will also be upgraded with the construction. They started advertising for the job on June 24, 2009 and expect to have a contractor successfully picked by September 1, 2009. The airport estimated that 207 jobs would be created by the construction.

On October 20, 2009 American Airlines announced the addition of new flights between Pittsburgh and Chicago-O'Hare, doubling the current number from 3 to 6 beginning in April 2010. Also the airline will begin to use only mainline aircraft on its Pittsburgh-Dallas/Fort Worth route.

Gulfstream International Airlines announced that they would like to restore service from Pittsburgh to smaller cities within 400 miles. They want to bring back service lost by US Airways in their cutbacks. They intend to fly to 6-8 cities by the end of 2010. The only to confirmed cities are Harrisburg and Du Bois. Cities of interest include Columbus OH, Indianapolis IN, and smaller cities in Pennsylvania. In addition, the airport authority hopes to offer connecting service to other airlines from these new routes. Service is being planned to start in the first quarter of 2010.

Passenger complex

The airport complex consists of two main buildings, the "Landside Terminal" and the "Airside Terminal."

Landside Terminal

The landside terminal is the building closest to the parking areas and the entry point for passengers whose flights originate from Pittsburgh. It includes ticketing, 12 baggage claim areas (6 belong to US Airways, although they currently utilize 3 ), security checkpoints, and ground transportation such as taxi, limo, and rapid transit. There is a Hyatt Regency Hotel attached to the enclosed moving walkway. There are also shops in the landside terminal including Au Bon Pain, Travelmart, Sue Venir, City of Bridges Cafe, and a baggage claim Travelmart. There are Travelers Aid desks on the transit and baggage claim levels as well as Airport Police Headquarters.

After passing through the security checkpoint, passengers board one of two underground people movers that travel to the airside terminal, where all departure gates are located. It was built and operated by Bombardier Transportation and is completely controlled by computer (there is no driver onboard).

The baggage claim is located on the bottom level of the Landside Terminal.

Airside Terminal

The airside terminal consists of 4 concourses (A, B, C, D) that hold the departure gates. In the center core is the majority of the AirMall shops (there are over 100 shops including GAP, Swarovski, Brighton Collectibles, Brooks Brothers, Body Shop, Godiva, Victoria's Secret, Sam Adams Brewery, Lids, Ben & Jerry's, PGA Tour Shop, GNC, Brookstone, Charley's Steakhouse and Rite Aid). On the mezzanine level are the US Airways Club and a chapel. There are also Carnegie Science Centermarker and other historic sites Pittsburgh Aviation History Displays located throughout the airport.

Airline lounges

US Airways has their US Airways Club on the mezzanine level of the airside terminal. It is accessible by escalators in the center core area. Before a post 9/11 restructure of routes (dehubbing PIT), US Airways had three clubs. The other two clubs were located down the A and B concourses. British Airways also had a lounge area in the C concourse during their transatlantic flight operations from Pittsburgh (1980s to late 1990s). Their lounge room is still there intact but now closed off.

Parking

PIT offers on site parking operated by the Grant Oliver Corporation and patrolled by the Allegheny County Police. Grant Oliver offers usage of a GO FAST Pass account to pay for parking electronically at the airport. Go Fast Pass customers may register their E-Zpass transponders to use with the system, although billing and other aspects of the system are entirely handled by Grant Oliver. There are regular parking shuttles to the Long Term and Extended lots that can be accessed from the Baggage Claim level of the Landside Terminal outside doors six and eight.

There are three options for parking: Short Term, Long Term, and Extended. The Short Term garage is attached to the Landside Terminal via the enclosed moving walkway. There are 2,100 spaces available. The Long Term section also quick access to the enclosed moving walkway. There are 3,100 spaces available here. The Extended section does not have access to the enclosed moving walkway but does have regular parking shuttles that can be accessed from the Baggage Claim level of the Landside Terminal outside doors six and eight. There are 8,000 spaces available in the Extended lot.

PIT has 75 gates on 4 concourses:

Concourse A
Gate A5 (Southwest)
Concourse A has 25 gates: A1 - A25

Note: Only 12 gates are currently available for use: A1-A10, A12, & A14. The far end of the concourse has been closed off indefinitely.

Concourse B
Beginning of Concourse B, April 2007
Concourse B has 25 gates: B26 - B50

Note: Only 12 gates are currently available for use: B26-B37. The far end of the concourse has been closed-off indefinitely.

Concourse C
Gate C54 (AirTran), April 2007
Concourse C has 11 gates: C51 - C61.

;International arrivals
All international arrivals, except for cities with United States border preclearance, pass through Concourse C as customs and immigration is located on the lower level of the concourse. Gates C55, C57 & C59-C61 near the end of the concourse are designated to accommodate international traffic. Gate C61 includes a dual jetway to accommodate widebody aircraft, which was originally designed for US Airways' Airbus A330 and British Airways' Boeing 747. Currently, only Delta and USA3000 serve destinations without preclearance.

Concourse D
Concourse D (April 2007)
Concourse D has 14 gates: D76 - D89. Concourse D was the only concourse that US Airways never operated from in their hub days at the airport.

Concourse E
Demolished arm of the E gates
Concourse E had 22 gates: E1 - E22

Concourse E was a passenger terminal area connected to the airport's landside building and was formerly used for quick access to US Airways Express commuter aircraft. Following cuts in service by US Airways, all Concourse E gates have been closed to air traffic. A portion of the concourse has been demolished to make way for the new North Matrix baggage sorting facility for US Airways, while the remaining portion of the lounge area is used as an alternative security checkpoint. This additional checkpoint helps alleviate long lines at the airport's main airside checkpoint during peak travel times. Signs posted near the normal checkpoint indicate whether the additional checkpoint is in operation.

Airlines and destinations

Cargo

Pittsburgh boasts a rapidly growing freight business. A Free Trade zone of 5,000 acres, access to three class-one railroad freight lines, two interstate highways, and just a few miles from the nation's second largest inland port. With 30,000 acres in three industrial parks pad-ready for expansion, it already is home to over 200 land and air freight companies. [35107]The airport's three largest cargo carriers account for over 100 million pounds (45 million kg) of freight per year. Three cargo buildings provide more than of warehouse capacity and over of apron space.

LogisticsCentre, a master planned industrial park at the intersection of Business Route 60 and International Drive, is a 440-acre North Field site to contain 900,000 square feet of Class A warehouse, distribution and air cargo space. Current tenents include Dick's Sporting Goods new world headquarters. It is located within Foreign Trade Zone #33.

Currently, the ACAA is in talks with 10 different airlines and freight forwarders in hopes to create a link to China for freight and even passengers from the airport.

The following major cargo airlines have regular cargo service to and from PIT. Multiple destinations are served, the usual ones are noted:

Free Trade Zone

Pittsburgh International has 5,000 acres designated as a Free Trade Zone including the airports massive fuel farm.[35108]

International Food Cargo Hub

The world's leading caterer for air and business, LSG SkyChefs in 2007 chose Pittsburgh as it's sole Western Hemispheremarker manufacturing facility. It expanded it's customer service center on the cargo side of the airport by 20,000 square feet and now employs just over 100 with the capacity of making close to 25 million meals a year for distribution to flights all over the Americas. [35109] cited by the company as it's reason for choosing the Pittsburgh market was the regions strategic location by truck and air to major markets of both suppliers and customers as well as the ability of Pittsburgh excellent record in maintaining and expanding capacity.

Future "Silk Air-Route"

Pittsburgh has been eyed by Chinesemarker business and industry as a key expansion point for a cargo super-highway. Negotiations are currently under way to serve as the American port to China's main industrial airport of Xi'an Xianyangmarker. [35110]. In October of 2009 Pittsburgh based retailer American Eagle Outfitters landed it's first direct flight cargo plane (Boeing 747-300) from Asia at PIT. Cargo came from both South Korea and Vietnam and entered U.S. Customs at the airport. AEO plans to direct-connect with their clothing suppliers in Asia on a quarterly or monthly basis by consolidating shipping to one chartered cargo flight through Pittsburgh.

Top routes and airlines

Busiest routes out of PIT (August 2009)
Rank Airport Weekly flights Airlines
1 New York City 149 American(JFK), Continental(EWR), Delta(JFK), JetBlue(JFK), US Airways(LGA)
2 Chicago 108 American(ORD), Southwest(MDW), United(ORD)
3 Atlantamarker
Washington, D.C
93 Airtran, Delta
Southwest(BWI), United(IAD), US Airways(DCA)
5 Philadelphiamarker 90 Southwest, US Airways, USA3000


Top airlines at PIT by daily flights (August 2009)
Rank Airline Average daily flights Top destination
1 US Airways 45 Philadelphiamarker
2 Delta Air Lines 30 Atlantamarker
3 Southwest Airlinesmarker 20 Chicago-Midwaymarker
4 United Airlines 17 Chicago-O'Haremarker
5 Continental Airlines 15 Newarkmarker
6 AirTran Airways
American Airlines
9 Atlantamarker
Dallas/Fort Worthmarker
8 JetBlue Airways
Midwest Express
4 New York-JFKmarker
Milwaukeemarker
10 Air Canada 3 Toronto-Pearsonmarker
11 Direct Air
USA 3000 Airlines
1 Myrtle Beachmarker
Fort Myersmarker


Top airlines at PIT by passengers. (2008 Final)
Rank Airline Passengers % Change
1 US Airways 2,880,602 32.3
2 Delta Air Lines 1,488,803 6.2
3 Southwest Airlinesmarker 1,465,277 5.3
4 United Airlines 773,468 6.8
5 Continental Airlines 553,619 10.7
6 Airtran Airways 527,349 29.5
7 American Airlines 451,279 2
8 JetBlue Airways 198,719 26.8
9 USA 3000 Airlines 180,767 8.5
10 Midwest Airlines 81,315 23.6
11 Air Canada 44,129 13.9
12 Direct Air 27,686 29.3


Transportation

Highway connections

PIT is located at Exit 53 of Interstate 376 and the Northern Terminus Pennsylvania Route 576 (future I-576), and within of I-79 and of I-76 the Pennsylvania Turnpike. I-70 to the south and I-80 to the north are both less than an hour away.

Public transit

Bus service is also available from Downtown Pittsburghmarker and the city's University District via Port Authority's 28X Route as well as from the suburban BCTA Transitmarker to locations north and westbound. MountinLine Transit's Grey Line also has service to the South serving North Central West Virginia, including West Virginia Universitymarker, and Greene County, PA.
Route Title Areas Served
Airport Flyer
28X Universities, Downtown Pittsburghmarker, PIT Robinson Town Centremarker, Duquesne Inclinemarker, downtown Pittsburghmarker, Point Park Universitymarker, Duquesne Universitymarker, Chatham Universitymarker, University of Pittsburghmarker, Oakland, Carnegie Mellon Universitymarker
BCTA
#6 Rochestermarker, PIT, Robinson Mallmarker Rochestermarker, Hopewell, PIT, Robinson Town Centremarker, Robinson Mallmarker
MountainLine Transit
#29 Morgantownmarker, PIT, Pittsburgh Greyhound Station Clarksburgmarker, Fairmontmarker, Morgantownmarker, Waynesburgmarker, PIT, Pittsburgh Greyhound


Allegheny County Chief Executive Dan Onorato hopes to eventually extend the Pittsburgh Light Rail system to the airport one day.. In 2009, Onorato along with Congressman Mike Doyle requested approxiametly $7 million in funding from the federal government for preliminary planning of the extension. The Obama administration in 2009 has also funded further research in the decade long proposal to install a Maglev line from Pittsburgh International east to Downtown Pittsburghmarker and the eastern suburbs of Monroeville, Pennsylvaniamarker and Greensburg, Pennsylvaniamarker. Although the continued funding is hopeful, the plan is at least a decade away from completion.

Innovations

Wi-Fi

Free Wi-Fi throughout a passenger terminal was unheard of until Pittsburgh International Airport launched the world's first in September 2003, a service that has been copied by several airports and airline terminals throughout the world since.
Hand in hand with its technology prowess Pittsburgh also became the first airport in the world to offer fare alert emails. The airport innovated proactive emails on airfare discounts by carrier and destination weekly, proving very successful it was recognized by the Airports Council International for Excellence in Marketing and Communications in 2007 as first place in North America. Using another blessing of Wi-Fi technology, Pittsburgh International Airport also helped to innovate electronic parking at airports nationwide with its GoFastPass system - a system similar to E-ZPass.


AirMall concept

The AirMall at the airport also provided several world's firsts in both featuring fair "street prices" to wary air travelers and being the first major and diverse shopping center located within an airport terminal when it opened in 1992 with over 100 name brand retailers. Along with this concept Pittsburgh became the first airport to have two Xpress Spas in its retail area.

Upon opening, many local shoppers used to be able to shop inside the AirMall without a boarding pass. This procedure changed after 9/11 so that anyone who was allowed past security without being an employee at the AirMall or the airport itself must purchase an airline ticket. Business dropped considerably due to the tighter regulations, though business has since re-gained pre-9/11 levels.

Among the stores currently at the AirMall include several specialty shops, CNBCmarker Business stores, Sunglass Hut, L'Occitane en Provence, a Rite Aid (a former Eckerd, itself originally a Thrift Drug), two McDonald's locations, T.G.I. Friday's, Charley's Steakery, Qdoba Mexican Grill, Subway, Lids and Lids Kids, Victoria's Secret, O'Briens Grille & Pub, Upper Crust, Godiva Chocolates, Brooks Brothers, Brookstone, Taxco Sterling Silver, Crocs Store, Spirit of the Red Horse, Swarovski, Swatch, Tie Rack, Godiva, Au Bon Pain, Mayorga Coffee, and Quiznos.

Service

Pittsburgh was one of the first airports to deploy dozens of portable defibrillators, and developed the first volunteer ambassador program.. As of 2007 PIT became one of the first airport pilot programs (post 9/11) to allow guests at the airport hotel to have terminal access to the Airmall. Guests at the Hyatt Regency wishing to use this service must request a pass at the front desk and they will contact the proper authority to get them a security pass. Those wishing to do so still have to go through the security checkpoint.

PIT has also shown excellence among carrier networks. Southwest Airlines had named its Pittsburgh base as the best in its system for 2006, in its first full year of service at PIT. Among the factors in the award is on-time performance and efficient baggage service, two areas where the airport in general excels.

Aviation

Airport maintenance has also claimed world firsts for PIT, developing one of the best winter weather operations in the nation with its unique front and rear deicing fleets and embedded runway sensors. The first use of the front discharge spray bars during winter weather was at Pittsburgh. This innovative spirit among airport ground maintenance crews coupled with the abundance of runways and lengths, has given Pittsburgh the reputation in the industry as one of the few airports free of weather or winter delays.

PIT also is unique as being scheduled as the first "Joint Readiness Center",

Runways

PIT's airfield features a wide, open layout and four runways, including three east-west parallel runways and a fourth crosswind runway. This configuration allows for the efficient flow of air traffic in nearly any wind condition. The airport's two longest runways are and in length, allowing PIT to accommodate even the largest of commercial aircraft. However, due to the development of non-aviation related business on airport land, PIT can add only one additional runway (this number was as high as four in the past).

With the availability of three parallel runways, simultaneous landings or departures can be performed in nearly any situation. Runways 10R and 10L are equipped with Category III ILS (Instrument Landing System). 28R, 28L, and 32 have Category I ILS and 10C/ 28C has LOC/ GS.

Additional operations

FAA Facilities

Although the Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard maintain a great presence on that corner of the complex, the shuttering of some of the Air Force facilities in recent decades has led to the growth of a new tenant for that equipment at Pittsburgh. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has taken over much of the excess cold-war era infrastructure that the Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard no longer needs, making Pittsburgh recently an important regional center for the agency.

General aviation

The new Business Aviation Center (FBO Avcenter), located at the site of the former airport terminal building, is a modern and full service facility for management of corporate air travel and general aviation. It includes a 30,000 square-foot hangar, 7,250 square feet of flex office space, charter terminal facilities, conference rooms, passenger lounges, workout rooms, and a restaurant. It is accessible by using Business 60 (Future Business I-376) in Moon Townshipmarker.

Airlines Destinations
Netjets Chartered Flights across North America.


Fire school

The Allegheny County Airport Authority Fire Bureau operates a next-generation, state of the art Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting (ARFF) Training Center.

As an FAA regional training facility it comes equipped with a Boeing 757 mock-up offering realistic and challenging training. The simulated tail engine offers ARFF personnel critical high engine training scenarios. Adjacent to the first-training simulator is a four-story tower that houses the Computer Center ensuring consistent repeatable evolutions for each trainee and allows training to be conducted with the utmost safety of participants in mind. Being well within the airport boundary and designed to be in an area that minimizes distractions, the classrooms, management center, vehicle bay, trainee/equipment support areas and visitors center are located directly adjacent to the training grounds. This layout maximizes training time for students. The use of propane and control of water run-off combine to reduce environmental impact while providing quality occupational education for fire fighters, emergency responders and industrial personnel.

The year round training facility offers specialized sessions in cold climate training evolutions. The system is propane fueled and computer controlled. It features a number of burn scenarios including:

Fictional portrayals

PIT has hosted major Hollywood productions, including:
Movie Production Usage
Only You 1994 during the beginning of the movie when Marissa Tomei's character rushes to the Airport to meet her soul mate and then flies to Venice
Houseguest 1995 when all characters are introduced into the film, Sinbad attempts to escape from the mob at the Airport landside terminal and convinces Phil Hartman and his family that he is his long last classmate.
The Young and the Restless March 1998 As a stand in for the fictional Genoa City International Airport.
Dogma 1999 during the opening scenes with Ben Affleck and Matt Damon as a stand in for a "Wisconsin Airport"
Wonder Boys 2000
Screwed 2000 With Dave Chappell
Smart People 2008 With Sarah Jessica Parker
Zack and Miri Make a Porno 2008
She's Out Of My League (Still in production)
The Next Three Days (filming) Russell Crowe and Elizabeth Banks drama filming in the landside terminal at the "Canadian Southern Airlines" counter and at the airside terminal at the Southwest Airlines gates.


Aircraft accidents involving PIT

Date Flight/Airplane Description
November 22, 2001 Corporate Learjet Crashed after a rapid takeoff in which it went "nose-high" before the Pilot Flying (PF) lost control, both on board were killed.
September 8, 1994 USAir Flight 427 Crashed on approach from Chicago O'Hare International Airportmarker. All 132 people on board were killed. It resulted in the longest and most thorough NTSB investigation in world history. It was determined that a lock occurred in rudder control that caused the plane to fall uncontrollably from . Boeing has retrofitted every 737 because of the data gathered from this crash. The plane crashed roughly North-Northwest in Hopewell Townshipmarker.
December 3, 1990 Northwest Airlines Flight 1482marker Departing for Pittsburghmarker when it collided with Northwest Flight 299, a Boeing 727 at the intersection of Runways 09/27 and 03C/21C at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airportmarker. The 727 departing for Memphis International Airportmarker was on its takeoff roll when it collided with the DC-9 that was just taxing onto the other runway. One of the causes of the incident was because of dense fog in the area. No one on the 727 was injured, but the DC-9 was completely destroyed.
April 1, 1956 TWA Flight 400 It was a flight from Pittsburgh to Newarkmarker. It crashed about a half mile after taking off when the Captain and First Officer did not immediately correct a small engine malfunction/fire. Due to miscommunication and lack of focus it caused failure and a crash. Twenty-two of 36 occupants were killed.


References

External links




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