Long lines at ONT?

Ever encounter issues or long wait times while going through the checkpoint at LA/Ontario International Airport?

(I’ve been meaning to get to this item since last week but it’s been a little busy.)

Jim Bowman, at last week’s Ontario International Airport Authority, brought up an issue he recently noticed while traveling through the airport – a long line that had formed to go through the first checkpoint.

“I noticed a rather extraordinary long line of what should have been manned by someone, instead there was an abandoned TSA station,” he said.

Bowman said there was nobody there to process travelers.

This might be something that the new Federal Security director at ONT, Martin Elam, may handle or want to address in the future.

But that’s not all. Bowman, a longtime Ontario Councilman, said he was disappointed in the airport’s appearance.

“Service is everything, appearance is everything and the outside of the airport looks atrocious,” he said.

According to Bowman the grass near Terminal 4 has grown a nearly a foot tall.

“These are situations that a good partner doesn’t make with an asset of such value,” he said. “This exudes the reasons that L.A. is so far away and just doesn’t care about Ontario.”

ONT is managed by Los Angeles World Airports.

Have you ever encountered similar issues? Let me know.

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ONT May traffic figures down

May passenger traffic figures for LA/Ontario International Airport declined 9 .3 percent from the same month last year, making it the largest drop in monthly passenger traffic since October 2011.

Back in 2011 ONT experienced a 10.2 percent decline in passenger traffic compared from the same month in 2010.

Figures released by Los Angeles World Airports on Wednesday show ONT recorded 339,082 travelers this past May as opposed to the 373,975 that utilized the twin terminals in May 2012.

Overall, there was a nearly 8 percent decline in the amount of travelers coming in and out of ONT for the first four months of the year compared to the same time frame in 2012.

To date, 1.6 million passengers have utilized the airport.

In air cargo, there was a nearly 3 percent decline in May compared to the same time frame in May 2012.  For the year, the amount of air cargo tonnage moved through the Inland Empire facility was up 1.2 compared to the firs four months in 2012.

In a report to the Ontario International Airport Authority earlier this month. Nick Johnson, aviation consultant told the board there could be a 10.7 percent decline in seats scheduled at ONT this past May.

But Johnson told the authority ONT is on track to handle fewer than 4 million passengers , 25 percent of its capability, this year.

Although there is still a downward trend in passenger traffic at ONT, it is not as severe as the days when it was  experiencing double-digit declines — some as high as 30 percent —  on a monthly basis.



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What’s ONT’s tipping point?

LA/Ontario International Airport may be capable of 12 million annual passengers but projections show it may only handle fewer than 4 million passengers this year – 25 percent of its capacity.

And that decline is noticeable in the terminals which are empty and quieter. Less than 70 percent of people now traveling in and out of the airport compared to pique activity only a couple of years ago.

It’s this scenario that has Ontario International Airport Authority president Alan Wapner wondering what is Ontario’s tipping point, what could force the closure of the airport?

“There’s got to be a minimum operating costs at the airport. I want to find out what that is and what’s the tipping point of survival at ONT,” Wapner asked. “People have got to wake up and understand you can’t continue this steep downward spiral into infinity.” Continue reading

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LAWA president denies request to meet at ONT

Don’t expect Los Angeles World Airports’ governing body to hold a board meeting at LA/Ontario International Airport anytime soon.

LAWA’s Board of Airport Commissioners president Michael Lawson denied an April request extending an invitation that they hold a meeting in Ontario.

Alan Wapner, president of the Ontario International Airport Authority, sent a letter on April 17, just days after Ontario filed a claim to dissolve the Joint Powers Agreement between the two cities and LAWA, which manages ONT, LAX and Van Nuys airports. The city eventually filed a lawsuit on June 3.

Lawson’s letter fires back at the OIAA for what he described as “false allegations of chronic neglect and mismanagement” there were made in the claim.

“I have no intention of staging a public meeting to provide the OIAA or the city of Ontario a platform to repeat such false claims or engage in other public displays that do nothing to substantively advance the goal of improving passenger and cargo traffic at LA/Ontario Airport,” Lawson wrote in his response dated May 2.

Here are the LAWA and OIAA letters.

Visit www.dailybulletin.com/ONT later today for the full story.

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New ONT Federal Security Director named

Martin Elam has been named the Federal Security director at LA/Ontario International and Palms Springs International airports, the Transportation Security Administration announced.

According to TSA spokesman, Nico Melendez, Elam was named late last week. He previously served as the FSD at Midway International Airport in Chicago  since 2010 where he managed 480 Federal airport security staff.

Here is the bio for Martin Elam.

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LA/Ontario International Airport in the news

It’s only Tuesday and we already have a bevy of ONT news to share:

At yesterday’s Ontario International Airport Authority meeting consultant Nick Johnson gave a presentation on LA/Ontario International Airport’s outlook and performance. I’ll have a story up later today on the website but in the meantime here’s the OIAA outlook report

At Monday’s meeting OIAA president Alan Wapner mentioned that he had received a response from Los Angeles World Airports Board of Airport Commissioners president, Michael Lawson, regarding his request to have a meeting in Ontario.

According to Wapner, Lawson denied the request. I’m working on getting a copy of both letters. Here’s the story I wrote back in April (for some reason I could only find a live link on Redlands Daily Facts’ site) discussing OIAA’s invitation to the Board of Airport Commissioners.

Tonight, the Ontario City Council is expected to approve a resolution authorizing the initiation of impasse appeal proceedings with the Los Angeles County Airport Land Use Commission. Here is the agenda.

On today’s site:

Too little too late?: Did “snail mail” kill an opportunity for Los Angeles and Ontario to meet and strike a deal to return ONT to local control? Here’s the story about LA Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa asking to reopen negotiations with Ontario.

What do you think about the move?

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Ontario International Airport Authority to meet this morning

The Ontario International Airport Authority will be holding a special meeting at 10 a.m. to discuss LA/Ontario Intentional Airport’s performance and outlook.

This is the first time the commission is coming together since the Ontario filed the lawsuit to dissolve the Joint Powers Agreement with Los Angeles World Airports. It also marks the first time they have gathered since Ontario filed a joint suit opposing the environmental plans for LAX.

The commission typically meets on the first Monday of the month.

Here is the agenda. It’s pretty light, as commissioners have pointed out before they can only do so much when they have no airport to govern.

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Los Angeles mayoral candidates discuss ONT

The Los Angeles Times recently conducted a thorough interview of all the mayoral candidates asking them a range of topics including LA/Ontario International Airport. Yup, that’s right. The competing newspaper asking the candidates what they thought about local control and if they’ed be in favor of selling the medium-hub airport.

Several of the candidates (I’m sure to the delight of Ontario officials) have expressed their favor of local ownership but didn’t really seem to favor selling the airport.

To read the responses for yourself, click here

Once you are on the page click the transportation link on the left side. Then, scroll down to question 12.

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Ontario Airport Alliance to meet

A couple of months ago I wrote about the Ontario Airport Alliance which is comprised of prominent community and business leaders who feel it is now up to this region to mobilize efforts for local control.
The alliance will be holding its monthly meeting on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. in the San Manuel Club at the Citizens Business Bank Arena.
At this meeting attendees will have an opportunity to meet and work with business and community leaders to develop strategies for increasing the economic benefits the airport provides to the Southern California Region.
OAA President, Steve PonTell will also have an update on the latest news and studies regarding Ontario Airport.
To reserve a seat or for more information, call Christy Schroeder christy@macevent.net
Citizens Business Bank Arena-San Manuel Club is at 4000 E. Ontario Center Parkway in Ontario.
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Restaurant closes at ONT

The declining passenger traffic figures may be taking a toll on the tenants inside the twin terminals at LA/Ontario International Airport.

The Applebee’s Grill & Bar restaurant in Terminal 2 has been temporarily shut down, airport officials confirmed.
Maria Tesoro-Fermin, spokeswoman for the airport said it “is an item that will be discussed by LAWA and Delaware North Companies (the restaurant’s operator at ONT) in the very near future.”
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