PIT charge per enplaned passenger decreases
CEO Christina Cassotis controls costs
Pittsburgh good collateral revenues, especially natural gas
The fees that Pittsburgh International Airport charges to airlines will drop by 8.4 percent in 2019 to $10.35 per departing passenger in 2019 — the sixth straight year the rate has fallen, officials said.
The Allegheny County Airport Authority on Friday approved the rates as part of the airport’s 2019 budget.
The plan includes $112.3 million in operating revenue, a 3 percent increase from this year, and sets aside $129.6 million for capital projects.
The bulk of capital money — $75 million — will go toward the first phase of planning and designs for the airport’s planned $1.1 billion terminal expansion , set for completion in 2023. The funding also may be used for relocating airlines or jetways, the budget says.
“We’re moving forward with our terminal modernization project,” airline spokesman Bob Kerlik said, “and we’re able to do it in a way that’s cost-effective for the carriers.”
Airlines tend to look favorably on lower as well as relatively stable rates charged to airlines — known as the cost per enplanement, or CPE — which means the trend could entice more airlines to introduce or expand service there.
The airport’s CPE next year is set at $10.35, down from $11.30 in 2018 and the all-time high of $14.97 in 2011.
Kerlik attributed the lower rates to a combination of increased revenues, cost controls and more passengers.
About 7.2 million passengers have traveled through the airport since Jan. 1 through the end of September, up by 8.4 percent from the same time last year, Kerlik said. Domestic travelers increased by about 525,000 (up 8.2 percent from 2018) through September and international passengers increased by about 33,000 (up 15.3 percent).
Natasha Lindstrom is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Natasha at 412-380-8514, firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @NewsNatasha.
Actually second to another year of 100% safety performance, airline/ tenants most appreciate a message from the landlord/airport of another yearly decrease in the charge per enplaned passenger, especially when the facility is beginning an expansion. Congratulations to Pittsburgh International Airport’s Authority Board and Management.
There is no magic in operating an airport. Starting with the Authority Board, but primarily through the directives of Christina Cassotis, CEO, the attention to costs, planning to minimize expenses, maximizing human assets and working smartly equate to lower burdens on PIT’s airlines. Outsiders probably do not recognize the range of tasks which operating this infrastructure entails- making sure that the runway lights meet safety standards, practicing for snow removal before the weather hits, keeping the markings and signs visible, the cleaning of all of the public spaces, patrolling of the parking lots, etc., etc.
The long term perspective is well demonstrated by the capital investment in revenue-generating space around the gates. The stores’ sales reduce the burden of the runways’ costs on the airlines.
PIT is exemplary in one dimension—the airport owns substantial land surrounding the “plant” and they have developed it. Sixteen buildings, offering a total of 2.4 million square feet of space, stand on what was once rolling topography and wetlands on the medium-sized hub’s northwest side. The airport benefits from the Alleghenies’ unusual topography—there’s natural gas beneath the surface and that means a $500 million drilling lease that gives CONSOL Energy the right to drill for natural gas and oil on airport lands. Under the deal, CONSOL paid a signing bonus of $50 million and will pay 18 percent royalties expected to total approximately $450 million over the next 20 years.
Good job PIT and the safety record is equally bright!!!
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