Friday, November 30, 2012

B-1B Bomber Arrival Cancelled

The arrival of the B-1B Lancer previously scheduled at Long Beach Airport (LGB) for today, Friday, November 30, has been cancelled.

How the Historic Mosaics Were Restored at the LB Airport

In 2009, while writing my second book on Long Beach history, I came across the fact that buried underneath the carpet at the LB Airport were a series of floor mosaics that were designed as part of the Southern California Art Project of the Works Project Administration (WPA) under the supervision of Grace Clements (1905-1969). She was designated "official supervisor of decorations of the Administration buildings at Daughterty Field."

Some of the mosaics were visible on the staircase and the restaurant but the remainder had been covered over by carpet. Unfortunately, the wall murals that accompanied the floor designs were painted over in 2005 and could not be recovered.

When Long Beach hired a new Director of the Lon g Beach Airport, I met with him and shared what I had discovered and encouraged him to have the carpet removed to see if the mosaics could be recovered.

Mario Rodriguez was very enthusiastic and when improvements were planned for the terminal, he included the removal of the carpet to see if the mosaics could be saved. And they have been.Just this month the restoration project was completed and mosaics are available for viewing.

The mosaics cover the 4,300 square foot first floor of the airport when installed by Clements and her workers. A 1942 article in the California Arts and Architecture magazine describes how Clements focused upon the theme of communication: "A large map of the western hemisphere showing air routes occupies the central portion of the concourse floor. Large geometric areas of unbroken color form the main body of the floor, highlighted by design units evolved from the idea of communication -- ships, oil, aviation and the telephone.

Clements also painted four murals on the first floor level dealing with a "particular means of communications -- by land, by water, by air and by sound."

(From Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske, 5th District, City of Long Beach, CA)

LGB's Mario Rodriguez on of 10 most important Long Beach leaders

When Mario Rodriguez took charge of Long Beach Airport operations in early 2009, the historic regional flying field was a functional landmark full of history but lacking in vision. Since then, he has launched a nationwide branding campaign to put Long Beach’s airport on the map while overseeing the implementation of a $140 million modernization plan, the crown jewel of which—a state-of-the-art concourse—will be opening ahead of schedule this December.

Instead of shrinking down an LAX-type airport model for the future LGB, Rodriguez’s plans called for the restoration of the airport’s historic art deco terminal—including the recently discovered mosaic floors hidden for decades under dingy carpet near the check-in desks—as well as a series of expansion projects that will soon posit the facility at the forefront of air travel.

In the last year, Rodriguez saw three consecutive quarters in which LGB not only had the cheapest airfares in the state, but the second-cheapest in the entire nation. All as the airport prepares to open a partially solar-powered 14,200 sq. ft. concourse that will generate more than a hundred new jobs and house Long Beach-only businesses.

By simultaneously respecting the past and crafting a vision for the future, Rodriguez’s power to give LGB a vision has made Long Beach’s once-overlooked local airport into a regional air travel gateway, one that will continue to be an economic force for the City without being detrimental towards the aura of what makes Long Beach Long Beach.

B-1B Lancer scheduled to land at LGB today, Nov 30

A B-1B Lancer is scheduled to land at Long Beach Airport (LGB) at 3:00 p.m. today.

Friday, November 16, 2012

JetBlue to Give Alaska Customers a New Option With Debut of Anchorage - Seattle Route

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (November 16, 2012) - JetBlue Airways (Nasdaq: JBLU) today announced plans to expand its schedule in Alaska with new nonstop service between Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The award-winning airline plans to launch a daily service for the summer season beginning in May 16, 2013.

JetBlue already offers Alaska travellers the only nonstop service between Anchorage and Los Angeles's convenient Long Beach Airport with a daily summer service - and nationwide connections - that will resume May 16, 2013. In addition, the new Anchorage-Seattle route will open up more connections for Alaska travellers onto JetBlue's Seattle-Boston, Seattle-Long Beach, and Seattle-New York/JFK routes.

"Seattle is the top destination for Alaska customers and today we're proud to announce a new option for getting there," said Scott Laurence, JetBlue's vice president of network planning. "Since we made our debut in Anchorage in 2010, locals have scooped up JetBlue's low fares and asked for more flights to more cities. We're very excited to build on the success of our L.A. route with this new Sea-Tac service."

JetBlue's schedule between ANC and SEA:

SEA to ANC: 8:00 p.m. - 10:40 p.m.
ANC to SEA: 1:00 a.m. - 5:25 a.m.

- Flights operate daily effective May 16, 2012-

JetBlue will offer travelers on its Anchorage flights a variety of uncommon perks including a first checked bag free (a), the most legroom in coach of any U.S. airline (based on average fleet-wide seat pitch), unlimited name brand snacks and drinks, as well as seatback entertainment including complimentary first-run movies from top Hollywood studios. All flights also include JetBlue's acclaimed customer service - at no extra charge.

Tickets for JetBlue's new Anchorage-Seattle service are expected to go on sale at on December 17, 2012.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

RAAF Takes Delivery of Sixth C-17

The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) received its sixth C-17 Globemaster III from Boeing on November 1 during delivery ceremonies at Boeing’s final assembly facilities in Long Beach. The aircraft is being assigned to No. 36 Squadron at RAAF Base Amberly near Brisbane. “I am delighted to accept the sixth C-17 on behalf of the Royal Australian Air Force,” said RAAF Chief of Air Force, Air Marshal Geoff Brown. “The C-17 is a capability that has improved Australia’s reach locally, regionally and globally. Individually, the aircraft is impressive – but as a fleet, it has fundamentally enhanced our strategic airlift agility to meet the Australian Defence Force Air Mobility requirements.” Boeing has delivered 248 C-17s worldwide, including 218 to the U.S. Air Force active duty, Guard and Reserve units. India has 10 C-17s on order for delivery in 2013 and 2014. Pictured above are members of the RAAF.

(Photograph by the Business Journal’s Thomas McConville)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

From The Archives: Golden West DHC-6 Twin Otter

Golden West Airlines DHC-6-200 Twin Otter N64141 (c/n 141) taken at Long Beach Airport. Note the Seaboard World DC-8 in the background. Unfortunately, this slide has been remounted so both the date of the slide and photographer are unknown. Any information for the date or photographer is always welcome as is personal stories related to the airline or aircraft.
(Photo: Stephen Tornblom Collection)