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Norfolk - 2013 Projects


zeppelin14

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That looks empty and barren. The kiosks added some life in that area. I didn't mind them, especially when there was a First Colony coffee house there. :)

When I flew to London last year I went through Charlotte and landed at Gatwick. Both airports were lively, noisy, and busy. When I flew back into Norfolk I swear you could've heard a pin drop in the terminal. It was very disappointing how quiet it was, and depressing. :( Don't really know what to do to increase traffic there. There was one point where they were actually talking about expanding and then the bottom fell out of the economy and that's the last I heard of it.

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It boggles my mind how an area of nearly 2 million people has such a small airport, while many other comparable-sized areas have airports way larger. Just to get an airport that offers layovers could do a lot for the local economy.

 

It's a nice airport, and I suppose the smaller size comes in handy when flying in or out, but I hate that it's so small.

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Years ago Norfolk had a chance to expand their airport and have Peidmont make Norfolk one of their major hubs..... Norfolk declined. A small southern town stepped in and expanded their airport and got the Peidmont hub. That city is Charlotte, NC.

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Norfolk International along with the Newport News Airport is perfect sizes for this area. If you have been following the Airlines Business.....consolidation is the game with both airlines(American and US Air the latest) and their hubs. There are plenty of cities which drastically increased the sizes of their airports....only to be left holding the bag when the HUB closed..........Pittsburgh, Cincinnati/N. Kentucky, Cleveland, St. Louis, ect.

 

It boggles my mind how an area of nearly 2 million people has such a small airport, while many other comparable-sized areas have airports way larger. Just to get an airport that offers layovers could do a lot for the local economy.

 

It's a nice airport, and I suppose the smaller size comes in handy when flying in or out, but I hate that it's so small.

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Must of been a very long time ago, because a North Carolina based airlines having their major hub out of state would of been odd.

Years ago Norfolk had a chance to expand their airport and have Peidmont make Norfolk one of their major hubs..... Norfolk declined. A small southern town stepped in and expanded their airport and got the Peidmont hub. That city is Charlotte, NC.

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Stats and info from wikipedia:

 

Following airline route deregulation in the late 1970s, the airline grew rapidly and developed a hub-and-spoke system with a hub at Charlotte/Douglas International Airport in Charlotte, North Carolina.

 

Since the 1970s - Norfolk:

1970 307,951   0.7% 1980 266,979   −13.3% 1990 261,229   −2.2% 2000 234,403   −10.3% 2010 242,803   3.6%

 

Since the 1970s - Charlotte:

1970 241,420   19.8% 1980 315,474   30.7% 1990 395,934   25.5% 2000 540,828   36.6% 2010 731,424  

35.2%

 

Look at the growth percentage numbers. Stagering!!! Piedmont was based in Winston-Salem and had Norfolk targeted as it's main hub because it was larger at the time. Norfolk turned down their proposal and Charlotte was chosen. When US Airways bought out Piedmont, Charlotte REALLY got big. Norfolk has been "screwing up" things for a long time. If Norfolk would have landed Piedmont, we would be the city with 800,000 people, 50 story buildings, and professional sports teams.

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Stats and info from wikipedia:

 

Following airline route deregulation in the late 1970s, the airline grew rapidly and developed a hub-and-spoke system with a hub at Charlotte/Douglas International Airport in Charlotte, North Carolina.

 

Since the 1970s - Norfolk:

1970 307,951   0.7% 1980 266,979   −13.3% 1990 261,229   −2.2% 2000 234,403   −10.3% 2010 242,803   3.6%

 

Since the 1970s - Charlotte:

1970 241,420   19.8% 1980 315,474   30.7% 1990 395,934   25.5% 2000 540,828   36.6% 2010 731,424  

35.2%

 

Look at the growth percentage numbers. Stagering!!! Piedmont was based in Winston-Salem and had Norfolk targeted as it's main hub because it was larger at the time. Norfolk turned down their proposal and Charlotte was chosen. When US Airways bought out Piedmont, Charlotte REALLY got big. Norfolk has been "screwing up" things for a long time. If Norfolk would have landed Piedmont, we would be the city with 800,000 people, 50 story buildings, and professional sports teams.

I read that, and no lie, my stomach sank. I remember flying Piedmont in the late-80s, before it became US Airways, and now I realize they had a big presence in this region and NC. Why Norfolk would ever turn down an offer like that baffles and frustrates me. We've talked about a lot of short-sighted moves, but this really upsets me for some reason.

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I did not live here in the Piedmont days, so I do not know why Norfolk turned down Piedmont's offer.  But perhaps it is because the Norfolk Airport is land-locked.  Norfolk has a single runway.  There is not enough room for a second parallel runway, without buying property that is now an industrial park.  And that property is in Virginia Beach.  I don't know if parallel runways was a requirement for a hub.  I don't know if the necessary land being in VB presented a problem.  I am just suggesting it as a possible reason for turning down the offer.

 

A few years ago, Norfolk announced plans to build a second, parallel runway.  The separation between the two runways did not meet FAA requirements for the runways to operate simultaneously. (As I recall, FAA regulations require 1,000 feet separation between the runways for simultaneous operations.)  The second runway would have allowed maintenance or snow removal to be done on one runway without shutting down the airport altogether.

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I sounds like a nice "typical Norfolk blowing it" story, but other than message board rumors, nobody has produced any serious evidence of Piedmont hub ever being considered here. Norfolk International being land locked was a reason an new airport in Isle of Wright was considered in the past....but it was considered too expensive and risky.....wise choice.

I did not live here in the Piedmont days, so I do not know why Norfolk turned down Piedmont's offer.  But perhaps it is because the Norfolk Airport is land-locked.  Norfolk has a single runway.  There is not enough room for a second parallel runway, without buying property that is now an industrial park.  And that property is in Virginia Beach.  I don't know if parallel runways was a requirement for a hub.  I don't know if the necessary land being in VB presented a problem.  I am just suggesting it as a possible reason for turning down the offer.

 

A few years ago, Norfolk announced plans to build a second, parallel runway.  The separation between the two runways did not meet FAA requirements for the runways to operate simultaneously. (As I recall, FAA regulations require 1,000 feet separation between the runways for simultaneous operations.)  The second runway would have allowed maintenance or snow removal to be done on one runway without shutting down the airport altogether.

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Its not wise to say because we turned down Piedmont we're not bigger like Charlotte as it is today. Charlotte is not a cul-de-sac community, it has major Fortune 500 banks which bought out regional banks in the late 80s and early 90s, and does not have the transportation and geographic woes of Hampton Roads. Having a bigger airport would not necessarily make the region bigger or better today either. 

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