LAX runway move: An airline pilot says it’s needed

A couple of weeks ago, I asked if any airline pilots would give their opinion on whether LAX should move its northern-most runway 260 feet closer to homes and businesses in the Westchester community of Los Angeles.

Neighbors say the move is unnecessary.  But airport officials say increasing the space between two parallel runways — and building a new taxiway between them — is vital for safety. The airport already completed a similar project on two runways on the south side of LAX.

Jeff, a captain at a major airline who runs his own website, was kind enough to respond. (Jeff can’t say his employer, but if you go his site, you can likely guess). Here’s his take:

“Having flown in and out of LAX many times in the last two decades, I can readily confirm the hazard faced shortly after landing. Slowing the big jet to a safe taxiing speed is demanding enough, but you are faced with holding short of another active runway used for take-offs in a surprisingly short space.

The added room between runways with the associated parallel taxiway has definitely reduced the high number of runway incursions on the south runway complex. If safety is “Priority One” at LAX, then I’d say most airline pilots would be in favor of doing the same on the north side. I know I am.”

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We have a winner in the first “name that interior” competition

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Earlier this week, I asked if any of you could name the airline whose cabin interior is picture above.

I’m impressed with my readers. Two of them guessed correctly.

The answer is Fiji Airways, which, until this month when it changed its name, was known as Air Pacific. With eight planes and a hub at Nadi International Airport, the airline flies to 15 cities, including Los Angeles, Auckland and Hong Kong. I believe the goal of the name change was to help customers understand to where the carrier flies. Air Pacific was a bit vague.

Amol, who tweets as @PointsToPointB, was first guess correctly. He wins a Boeing 747 bag tag.

We’ll be doing this feature fairly often, so check back soon for another installment of name that interior.

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American Airlines announces tie-in with “Disney’s Planes” movie

We love the wonderful world of marketing tie-ins here at L.A. Airspace.

So we’re amused by today’s American Airlines news. The carrier announced a strategic partnership with the new “Disney’s Planes” movie. According to our release, the animated movie includes a cameo from “Tripp,” a version of American’s 777-300. I haven’t seen the film, but I gather airplanes are the film’s characters.

Apparently, American surprised travelers at Los Angeles International Airport today with free stuff related to the movie. Who doesn’t like swag?

I’m not a huge fan of giving airlines free advertising here, but the commercial referenced above is pretty clever. What do you think?

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Burbank Bob Hope Airport seeks more film shoots

Passenger traffic is down at Burbank Bob Hope Airport, but airport officials are hoping there’s more than one way to increase revenues.

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After a decade long hiatus, brought about by Sept. 11, the airport is once again seeking to entice filmmakers to shoot at the airport. Done right, this can be a fairly profitable enterprise.

Earlier this month, airport officials say they brought 60 location scouts to Bob Hope for a behind the scenes tour. Among the things that airport officials touted: proximity to many major studios, an easy application process, “reasonable costs,” and a variety of terminal airfield and hanger spaces open for filming.

Airport officials say recent shoots have included the movie “The Bling Ring,” as well episodes of “Arrested Development,” “NCIS: Los Angeles” and Grey’s Anatomy.

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Virgin America to drop Los Angeles to Portland route

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Our friends at Airlineroute.net report Virgin America is dropping its twice daily service from Los Angeles International Airport to Portland on August 1.

On the same day, flights between San Francisco and Portland increase from once per day to three times daily, according to the site.

The LAX-Portland route is fairly competitive.  United and Alaska both serve the route, and Delta will soon begin flights between the two cities. Also, JetBlue flies between Long Beach and Portland.

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