St Louis Lambert airport looks to ways to tap future growth markets
ST LOUIS Lambert International Airport is exploring the possibility of turning the city-owned airport over to a private operator, according to a draft of a confidential 110-page report obtained by the St
ST LOUIS Lambert International Airport is exploring the possibility of turning the city-owned airport over to a private operator, according to a draft of a confidential 110-page report obtained by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
The report, prepared by consultants hired by the city and led by New York-based Moelis & Company, offers a blueprint of how a private operator could transformed the airport with new investments and service enhancements.
The Airport Advisory Working Group, the city panel exploring privatisation, mostly behind closed doors, had planned to provide the final report to bidders, along with a formal request for proposals on a tentative 45-year lease, had the city continued privatisation talks.
Instead, after the city received responses from 18 potential bidders, Mayor Lyda Krewson on December 20 abruptly pulled the plug on the two-year process, citing a lack of broad support, including from the business community.
The consultants' report detailed the airport's operations and logistics, perceived strengths and opportunities for growth.
While Lambert's flight services and passenger numbers have rebounded in recent years, the report highlighted a growth strategy focused on building non-flight revenues to pay down debt and drive development on land surrounding the airport, citing the airport's unused terminal and runway space and 1,100 acres of adjacent undeveloped land.