Telluride Regional Airport receives delivery of SAF from Avfuel

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Avfuel-branded Telluride Regional Airport has become the first airport and FBO in Colorado to make sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) available to its customers. The FBO received its first demonstrative delivery of SAF from Avfuel in Februrary, with two more deliveries made in March.

Telluride Regional Airport has since begun to receive regular deliveries of Neste’s branded SAF from Avfuel. The first load arrived on 15 April, with each truckload of the Neste MY SAF providing a 22 metric ton reduction in carbon emissions over its lifecycle, which is equivalent to the amount of carbon sequestered by 28.7 acres of US forests per year.

Telluride Regional Ariport can now consistently provide SAF for all jet and turbine aircraft that land at the airport in order to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support sustainability goals.

“Our community desires to do its part in reducing carbon emissions,” said Kenneth Maenpa, Telluride’s Airport Manager. “As such, we are proud to be the first airport in Colorado to provide sustainable aviation fuel. Avfuel has worked diligently on the logistics for delivering SAF to Telluride Regional Airport, and we’re excited to announced this significant milestone that’s been three years in the making.”

Keith Sawyer, Avfuel’s Manager of Alternative Fuels, added: “Avfuel is thankful for the true partnership it has with the Telluride Regional Airport team, working together to provide cleaner solutions in one of the world’s most stunning natural environments. We congratulate the airport on being the first to provide SAF in the state of Colorado, which not only provides significant emissions reductions, but also raises awareness on the environmental benefits and safety of the product.”

Open 365 days a year, the Telluride Regional Airport is North America’s highest commercial airport at 9,070 feet above sea level and is a self-sustaining operation.

Signature Flight Support expands network with addition of Chantilly Air Jet Center

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Chantilly Air Jet Center, the newest full-service FBO serving the Washington, DC metro area has joined Signature Flight Support’s Signature Select network.

Based at the Manassas Regional Airport, Chantilly Air is an IS-BAH Stage 1 certified FBO. The 11,000 sq. ft. FBO terminal provides a range of amenities including a pilot lounge, snooze rooms and shower facilities. There is also a fitness centre for crew and passengers, as well as conference rooms and a refreshment galley. The greenfield facility also includes a 60,000 sq. ft. hangar and significant office space for rent, in addition to the provision of traditional FBO services, including fuelling, hangarage, a Part 145 repair station, as well as aircraft charter and fleet management.

Expressing his enthusiasm for joining the world’s largest network of FBOs, Tim Sullivan, COO Chantilly Air Jet Center said: “Chantilly Air is a family-owned entity that started in 1990. Building on our 30-year reputation as an aircraft charter and management provider, we look forward to becoming an FBO of choice for the metro DC area, as well as having a long and mutually beneficial partnership with the Signature network.”

Manasssas Regional Airport itself provides easy access to the I-66 and I-95 corridors, northern Virginia and downtown Washington, DC. It is the busiest general aviation gateway in the state of Virginia,and  is a towered airport with US Customs and Border Protection to accommodate international arrivals.

“We are pleased to welcome Chantilly Air to Signature Select and the global Signature Flight Support network,” said Mark Johnstone, CEO, Signature Aviation. “Chantilly Air’s reputation for ramp safety and adherence to industry best practices resonates with our own Signature Service Promise. I am confident their enrollment in the Signature Select programme will unlock significant mutual benefit for both of our customers and organisations.”

Jet Aviation achieves IS-BAH Stage II registration for San Juan FBO

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As the first FBO in Puerto Rico to qualify for IS-BAH Stage 1 registration in 2018, Jet Aviation’s San Juan facility at Luis Munoz Marin International Airport has now achieved stage II registration. The business aircraft handling standards are a global industry best practice for business aviation ground handlers.

Jet Aviation’s San Juan FBO is a full-service handling operation at one of the most convenient US points of entry for international flights.

“Between hurricanes, the ownership change and all the new systems that came with it, our team here in San Juan has had much to contend with the past few years and yet continues to raise the bar with new offerings and premium service delivery,” said Hector Vasquez, Senior Manager FBO. “The rigorous IS-BAH Stage II audit was a first for most of the team and I couldn’t be prouder of them.”

Featuring a pilot suite with a shower and snooze room, flight-planning stations, an executive passenger lounge and corporate meeting facilities, Jet Aviation’s San Juan facility is the only FBO in Puerto Rico with an onsite US Customs and Border Protection terminal. It also offers parking, refuelling services, aircraft maintenance and it recently extended its service offering to include airline and cargo fuelling in addition to cargo handling.

In June 2020 Jet Aviation also completed a new 20,000 sq. ft. hangar following the destruction of its old hangar during Hurricane Maria in 2017. The new facility can accommodate up to three small-to medium-sized aircraft and three large aircraft, up to the size of the Gulfstream G650 or the Global Express.

With this latest IS-BAH approval, Jet Aviation has a total of 29 IS-BAH registered FBOs around the world, including 10 in the US, 12 in EMEA and 7 in APAC.

WestJet unveils flagship lounge at Calgary Airport

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Canadian carrier, WestJet, is set to reveal its flagship lounge – the WestJet Elevation lounge at Calgary Airport in Canada.

Located in the airport’s domestic terminal and accessible to guests departing from Concourses A, B, C and Concourse D of the international terminal, the lounge will open to the public on 2 November in partnership with the Calgary Airport Authority.

“The WestJet Elevation Lounge is a global first and we are excited and proud that YYC Calgary International Airport is its home. WestJet is YYC’s biggest airline – by seats, by departures and by destinations served. Having the flagship WestJet Elevation Lounge here in Calgary means our mutual guests will have a new premium travel experience with great local amenities at the highest health and safety standards,” said Rob Palmer, Vice President of Commercial, Strategy and Chief Financial Officer at Calgary Airport Authority.

Featuring Canadian-inspired details, the lounge boasts more than 9,300 sq. ft of premium space and panoramic views. The flagship space was designed in collaboration with global architecture and design firm Gensler with a brief of incorporating the needs and safety of guests and frequent travellers.

Describing the opening of the lounge as a “pivotal moment” WestJet, Arved von zur Muehlen, WestJet CCO, said: “It was only fitting to open this flagship space within our home hub in Calgary. The lounge will provide our top-tier Westjet Rewards members and business cabin travellers with a safe and comfortable place to rest, rejuvenate and work when visiting Calgary.”

Signature Aviation sees traffic increase

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According to Signature Aviation, which operates the world’s largest FBO chain – Signature Flight Support, business aircraft activity continues to show an improving trend.

The company saw a 38% decline in revenues during the first six months of 2020 as a result of country lockdowns and travel restrictions in response to the coronavirus pandemic. In April the company noted a 77% reduction in activity year-on-year. However business aviation is now showing signs of recovery with May down an average of 58% from the same period in 2019. In June it was down just 32%.

Mark Johnstone, Signature Aviation’s CEO commented: “Since our AGM statement in mid-May, flight activity across our global network has continued to show an encouraging recovery and, in the US, with the support of the CARES Act, we have now called back all our furloughed staff. As we look forward, I remain confident in the resilience and potential of our market leading FBO business model, the quality of our unique network, the strength of our liquidity and therefore our ability to continue to invest in and grow our attractive and high return business.”

To further demonstrate the company’s positive outlook, Johnstone confirmed that Signature Aviation has recently reached an agreement to acquire two FBOs in Geneva and Sion in Switzerland. He added, “Finally, and as a precautionary measure given the macroeconomic uncertainties, we have secured a covenant waiver from our relationship banks for December 2020 and June 2o21.”

The company has also continued to invest growth capital during the COVID-19 period, recently opening its newly constructed Atlanta FBO, which has been built to LEED silver standard.