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Airport begins taking stock of Super Bowl's business impact

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The Super Bowl generated more than $1 million in merchandise sales at Indianapolis International Airport, airport officials said Friday.

The big game on Feb. 5 brought 528 additional aircraft to Indianapolis International and its regional reliever airports. Indianapolis Regional Airport, in Mount Comfort, alone hosted aircraft from 10 NFL team owners.

Airport executive Mike Medvescek told the Indianapolis Airport Authority board it was the biggest influx of planes he’d seen “in the 22 years I’ve worked here.”

To accommodate the influx, the airport closed one smaller runway and turned it into an airplane parking lot. The ramp of the former U.S. Postal Service air facility also became a parking place, as well as 58 acres of ramp space at the former passenger terminal.

FedEx Corp. agreed to donate a portion of its massive air-cargo terminal as a parking lot.

“Several billion dollars worth of metal was here sitting on the ground,” Medvescek said.

The crunch also was felt at security checkpoints. At one point, 24,574 passengers were screened in a 24-hour period compared with 9,229 during the same period of 2011.

Airport officials are still tallying key numbers such as landing-fee income, and they plan to present a full report of the Super Bowl’s impact next month.

Heavy planning for the event appeared to pay off, such as setting up an employee parking lot west of the terminal as a rental car return area as a way to prevent chaos at the airport parking garage.

“Within two hours, we had 2,000 cars returned to this lot,” said Marsha Stone, the airport’s chief financial officer.

Stone said taxi-cab activity swelled 631 percent on the Saturday before the game. Anticipating such demand, more than 200 additional cabs were prepared ahead of time.

“The guests were absolutely shocked they could get taxis so fast here,” Stone said.

The Super Bowl was a much-needed shot in the arm for the airport, which has seen flight activity fall during the economic slowdown. Officials are projecting a 3-percent decrease in passenger enplanements in 2012.

Some of that involves flight cutbacks by AirTran and Delta Air Lines.

Stone said airport officials and local businesses used the big event to buttonhole airline executives about adding more service.

 

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  • Taxpayer cost...
    ...I'm guessing it's waaay more than $1 Million taxpayer $$$$ spent so the airlines could waste/ pollute even MORE than usual, oh and the airport gift shops could sell a whole bunch of crap made in CHINA! USA!USA!USA!
  • transit
    I agree, the light rail system like the people mover would be nice. A free ride downtown may be a little much.
  • OMG
    Wow....one million and what did this cost the taxpayers?
    • Light Rail
      What is needed next is a light rail system from the airport to downtown, just like what servers the IU Hospital system. They have this in Phoenix. It needs to happen if you are going to build on the Convention City concept.

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      1. Now if he'd just stay there...

      2. Daniel - what about the many US citizens who do NOT follow what the Bible teaches? The Hindus, Jews, Muslims and others who are all American citizens entitled to all rights as Americans?? This issue has NOTHING to do with "What the Bible says..." Keep all Churches separate from State! Pence's ongoing idiocy continues to make Indiana look like a backwards, homophobic state in the eyes of our nation. Can't we move on to bigger issues - like educating our kids?

      3. 1. IBJ should link to the referenced report. We are in the age of electronic media...not sharing information is lazy. Here is a link http://www.in.gov/gov/files/Blue_Ribbon_Panel_Report_July_9_2014.pdf 2. The article should provide more clarity about the make-up of this panel. The commenters are making this item out to be partisan, it does not appear the panel is partisan. Here is a list of the panel which appears to be balanced with different SME to add different perspectives http://www.in.gov/activecalendar/EventList.aspx?view=EventDetails&eventidn=138116?formation_id=189603 3. It suggests a by-pass, I do not see where this report suggests another "loop". 4. Henry, based on your kneejerk reaction, we would be better off if you moved to another state unless your post was meant as sarcasm in which case I say Well Done. 5. The article and report actually indicates need to improve rail and port infrastructure in direct contradiction to Shayla commentary. Specifically, recommendation is to consider passenger rail projects... 6. People have a voice with their elected officials. These are suggestions and do not represent "crony capitalism", etc. The report needs to be analyzed and the legislature can decide on priorities and spending. Don't like it, then vote in a new legislature but quit artificially creating issues where there are none! People need to sift through the politics and provide constructive criticism to the process rather than making uninformed comments in a public forum based on misinformation. IBJ should work harder to correct the record in these forums when blatant errors or misrepresentations are made.

      4. Joe ... Marriage is defined in the Bible ... it is mentioned in the Bible often. Marriage is not mentioned once in the US or Indiana Constitution ...

      5. Daniel - Educate me please: what does the Bible have to do with laws? If the government wasn't in the business of marriage to begin with, then it wouldn't have to "define" marriage at all. Marriage could be left as a personal, religious, or otherwise unregulated action, with no ties to taxes, legal status, etc. Then people could marry whomever they want, and all this silliness would go away. Remember to vote Libertarian in November.

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