Underground Shuttle Opens at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport

Apr 03, 2001, 01:00 ET from Metropolitan Airports Commission

    MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL, April 3 /PRNewswire/ -- The Metropolitan Airports
 Commission (MAC) today opened the Hub Tram, an underground shuttle for
 travelers at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP).  The tram,
 which takes passengers to and from the parking and rental car facility and the
 Lindbergh Terminal, is the latest improvement to be completed under the $2.68
 billion MSP 2010:  Building a Better Airport plan.
     "The Hub Tram is a significant milestone in terms of customer
 convenience," said Denny Probst, MAC director of landside development.  "We
 have already completed a number of enhancements to the airport including
 additional and enhanced signage, concessions and parking facilities, and we
 expect passengers will be extremely pleased with this newest service."
     The tram will significantly reduce the travel time between the Blue/Red
 parking ramps and rental car facility and the Lindbergh Terminal.  While this
 route previously took nearly eight minutes by bus, it now is a mere 90-second
 ride for airport patrons.  The shuttle cars also provide level boarding,
 making the system fully accessible and easier for passengers with strollers or
 several pieces of luggage.
     "We are always looking for ways to improve the customers' experience when
 coming to the airport," said MAC chairman Charles Nichols.  "I have no doubt
 that many travelers' will benefit by using this new tram."
     The first tram cars were inserted in April 2000.  In anticipation of
 increasing airport traffic, two more cars have already been purchased by the
 MAC and will be added later this year.  Each of the 27,000-pound shuttle cars
 can hold up to 60 people.
     The $25 million Hub Tram system, the first of two shuttle systems to begin
 operating at the airport, was custom designed for MSP by Poma-Otis
 Transportation Systems of Farmington, Connecticut.  The second system -- a
 Concourse Tram -- also from Poma-Otis, will take passengers along Concourse C
 to the new regional concourse when it opens in mid-2002.  The shuttle cars,
 electronics and software will be the same on both systems, but the Concourse
 Tram will provide operate on elevated tracks.
 
     About the Metropolitan Airports Commission
     As a result of the Minnesota Legislature's decision in 1996 to expand MSP
 at its present site rather than build a new airport, the Metropolitan Airports
 Commission is implementing MSP 2010, a plan that includes improvements to the
 airfield, terminal, parking and roads.  MSP 2010 is designed to accommodate
 the region's demand for air travel through the year 2010.  The $2.68 billion
 project is paid through user fees (landing fees, parking revenue, passenger
 facility charges and concessions revenue), not taxes.
     The Metropolitan Airports Commission is an independent agency, which owns
 and operates MSP and six reliever airports in the metropolitan area.  MSP is
 the 7th busiest airport in the United States and ranks 12th in the world.
 
 

SOURCE Metropolitan Airports Commission
    MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL, April 3 /PRNewswire/ -- The Metropolitan Airports
 Commission (MAC) today opened the Hub Tram, an underground shuttle for
 travelers at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP).  The tram,
 which takes passengers to and from the parking and rental car facility and the
 Lindbergh Terminal, is the latest improvement to be completed under the $2.68
 billion MSP 2010:  Building a Better Airport plan.
     "The Hub Tram is a significant milestone in terms of customer
 convenience," said Denny Probst, MAC director of landside development.  "We
 have already completed a number of enhancements to the airport including
 additional and enhanced signage, concessions and parking facilities, and we
 expect passengers will be extremely pleased with this newest service."
     The tram will significantly reduce the travel time between the Blue/Red
 parking ramps and rental car facility and the Lindbergh Terminal.  While this
 route previously took nearly eight minutes by bus, it now is a mere 90-second
 ride for airport patrons.  The shuttle cars also provide level boarding,
 making the system fully accessible and easier for passengers with strollers or
 several pieces of luggage.
     "We are always looking for ways to improve the customers' experience when
 coming to the airport," said MAC chairman Charles Nichols.  "I have no doubt
 that many travelers' will benefit by using this new tram."
     The first tram cars were inserted in April 2000.  In anticipation of
 increasing airport traffic, two more cars have already been purchased by the
 MAC and will be added later this year.  Each of the 27,000-pound shuttle cars
 can hold up to 60 people.
     The $25 million Hub Tram system, the first of two shuttle systems to begin
 operating at the airport, was custom designed for MSP by Poma-Otis
 Transportation Systems of Farmington, Connecticut.  The second system -- a
 Concourse Tram -- also from Poma-Otis, will take passengers along Concourse C
 to the new regional concourse when it opens in mid-2002.  The shuttle cars,
 electronics and software will be the same on both systems, but the Concourse
 Tram will provide operate on elevated tracks.
 
     About the Metropolitan Airports Commission
     As a result of the Minnesota Legislature's decision in 1996 to expand MSP
 at its present site rather than build a new airport, the Metropolitan Airports
 Commission is implementing MSP 2010, a plan that includes improvements to the
 airfield, terminal, parking and roads.  MSP 2010 is designed to accommodate
 the region's demand for air travel through the year 2010.  The $2.68 billion
 project is paid through user fees (landing fees, parking revenue, passenger
 facility charges and concessions revenue), not taxes.
     The Metropolitan Airports Commission is an independent agency, which owns
 and operates MSP and six reliever airports in the metropolitan area.  MSP is
 the 7th busiest airport in the United States and ranks 12th in the world.
 
 SOURCE  Metropolitan Airports Commission