American Airlines in talks to revamp JFK terminal
Published: August 12, 2010 10:59 AM
Modified: August 12, 2010 12:03 PM
Carrier seeks to bring alliance partners British Airways and Iberia under one roof to counter Delta's $1.2 billion renovation at Kennedy.
(Bloomberg) -- American Airlines is in advanced talks to bring alliance partners British Airways Plc and Iberia Lineas Aereas de Espana SA into one “premiere” terminal at New York's Kennedy airport to bolster overseas flights.
“It will require expansion and will be significant in terms of investment,” Art Torno, vice president overseeing American's New York operations, said in an interview. “When we finish that terminal, it will be a watermark for everyone to shoot for.”
Putting the Oneworld alliance members under one roof would help AMR Corp.'s American counter Delta Air Lines Inc., which unveiled plans yesterday for a $1.2 billion renovation at John F. Kennedy International Airport. American and Delta are vying for passengers in New York, the biggest U.S. aviation market.
The cost and scope of the possible changes at American's Terminal 8 are still under discussion with British Airways, Spain's Iberia and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which oversees JFK, Mr. Torno said.
Any investment would be in addition to the $1.3 billion that Fort Worth, Texas-based American spent on a terminal renovation completed in 2007, he said. The 1-million-square-foot facility is American's primary international gateway in the eastern U.S.
American, British Airways and Iberia couldn't begin talks on a single terminal until after July 20, when they won final U.S. approval to jointly set prices, sell tickets and schedule trans-Atlantic flights. That venture doesn't cover other Oneworld members, which include Japan Airlines Corp.
“New York is really a battle for market share,” Mr. Torno said. “I don't think anyone can own New York. Our reaction is a competitive response to protect our interests here in the world's largest aviation market.”
American is adding 15 new destinations from New York this year and 33 additional flights. It will announce more schedule changes involving its alliance partners for the summer of 2011, he said.
Delta will renovate Kennedy's Terminal 4, which is used by foreign carriers, and link it with Terminal 2, where the Atlanta-based airline has flights.
The 1960s-era Terminal 3, formerly used by Pan American World Airways, will be demolished to make room for parking jets. Delta will begin work next month and finish by mid-2013. JFK is a Delta hub for overseas flights and became a focus for expansion after the airline's 2007 bankruptcy exit.
American also is remodeling Concourse D and Concourse C at New York's LaGuardia airport, where its domestic flights are based. The carrier, which is investing about $30 million in the projects, is considering whether to connect the two terminals or build an additional Admirals' Club lounge, Mr. Torno said.
Filed Under : American Airlines, Commercial Real Estate, Delta Air Lines, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey