Dallas is new Hub of Qeshm Virtual Airline in U.S.A
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (IATA: DFW, ICAO: KDFW, FAA LID: DFW) is the primary international airport serving the Dallas–Fort Worth area in the U.S. state of Texas. It is the largest hub for American Airlines, which is headquartered near the airport. In 2015, DFW served a record number 64,174,163 passengers.
It is the third busiest airport in the world by aircraft movements and the tenth busiest airport in the world by passenger traffic in 2015. It is the busiest airport in the State of Texas by both passenger enplanements and by aircraft movements (takeoffs and landings). It is the tenth busiest international gateway in the United States and second busiest in Texas (behind George Bush Intercontinental Airport). With nearly 900 daily flights, American Airlines at DFW is the second largest airline hub in the world and the United States, only behind Delta’s Atlanta hub. Located roughly halfway between the major cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, DFW spills across portions of Dallas and Tarrant counties, and includes portions of the cities of Irving, Euless, Grapevine and Coppell. It has its own post office ZIP code and United States Postal Service city designation (“DFW Airport, TX”), as well as its own police, fire protection and emergency medical services. The members of the airport’s board of directors are appointed by the “owner cities” of Dallas and Fort Worth, with a non-voting member chosen from the airport’s four neighboring cities on a rotating basis.
In October 2014, DFW Airport had service to 207 destinations, including 58 international and 149 domestic destinations within the U.S. In surpassing 200 destinations, DFW joined a small group of airports worldwide with that distinction, including Frankfurt Airport, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, Charles de Gaulle Airport, Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Munich Airport with 216 seasonal and year-round destinations, and Dubai International Airport.
As early as 1927, before the area had an airport, Dallas proposed a joint airport with Fort Worth. Fort Worth declined the offer and thus each city opened its own airport, Love Field and Meacham Field, each of which had scheduled airline service.
In 1940 the Civil Aeronautics Administration earmarked $1.9 million for the construction of a Dallas/Fort Worth Regional Airport. American Airlines and Braniff Airways struck a deal with the city of Arlington to build an airport there, but the governments of Dallas and Fort Worth disagreed over its construction and the project was abandoned in 1942. After World War II, Fort Worth annexed the site and developed it into Amon Carter Field with the help of American Airlines. In 1953 Fort Worth transferred its commercial flights from Meacham Field to the new airport, which was 12 miles (19 km) from Dallas Love Field. In 1960 Fort Worth purchased Amon Carter Field and renamed it Greater Southwest International Airport GSW in an attempt to compete with Dallas’ airport, but GSW’s traffic continued to decline relative to Dallas Love Field. By the mid-1960s Fort Worth was getting 1% of Texas air traffic while Dallas was getting 49%, which led to the virtual abandonment of GSW.
The joint airport proposal was revisited in 1961 after the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) refused to invest more money in separate Dallas and Fort Worth airports. Although the Fort Worth airport was eventually abandoned, Dallas Love Field became congested and had no more room to expand. Following an order from the federal government in 1964 that it would unilaterally choose a site if the cities could not come to an agreement on a site, officials from the two cities finally agreed on a location for a new regional airport that was north of the abandoned GSW and almost equidistant from the two city centers. The land was purchased by the cities in 1966 and construction began in 1969.
Voters went to the polls in cities throughout the Dallas/Ft Worth area to approve the new North Texas Regional Airport, which was named after the North Texas Commission that was instrumental in the regional airport coming to fruition. The North Texas Commission formed the North Texas Airport Commission to oversee the planning and construction of the giant airport. Area voters unanimously approved the airport referendum and the new North Texas Regional Airport would become a reality.
Under the original 1967 airport design, DFW was to have pier-shaped terminals perpendicular to a central highway. In 1968, the design was revised to provide for semicircular terminals, which served to isolate loading and unloading areas from the central highway, and to provide additional room for parking in the middle of each semicircle. The plan proposed thirteen such terminals, but only four were built initially.
Opening and operations
DFW held an open house and dedication ceremony on September 20–23, 1973, which included the first landing of a supersonic Concorde in the United States, an Air France aircraft en route from Caracas to Paris. The attendees at the airport’s dedication included former Texas Governor John Connally, Transportation Secretary Claude Brinegar, U.S. Senator Lloyd Bentsen and Texas Governor Dolph Briscoe. The airport opened for commercial service as Dallas/Fort Worth Regional Airport on January 13, 1974, at a cost of $700 million. The name change to Dallas/Fort Worth International did not occur until 1985.
When it opened, DFW had four terminals, numbered 2W, 2E, 3E and 4E. During its first year of operations, the airport was served by American Airlines, Braniff International Airways, Continental Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Eastern Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, Ozark Air Lines, Rio Airways and Texas International Airlines. The Wright Amendment of 1979 banned long distance flights into Love Field, leaving Southwest Airlines as Love Field’s only jet airline and operating solely as an intrastate air carrier in the state of Texas.
Braniff International Airways was a major operator at DFW in the airport’s early years, operating a hub from Terminal 2W with international flights to South America and Mexico from 1974, London from 1978 and Europe and Asia from 1979, before ceasing all operations in 1982. During the Braniff hub era, DFW was one of only four U.S. airports to have scheduled Concorde service; Braniff commenced scheduled Concorde service from Dallas to Washington from 1979 to 1980, using British Airways and Air France aircraft temporarily re-registered to Braniff while flying within the United States. British Airways later briefly flew Concorde to Dallas in 1988 as a substitute for its ordinarily scheduled DC-10 service.
Following airline deregulation, American Airlines, which had already been one of the largest carriers serving the Dallas/Fort Worth area for many years, established its first hub at DFW on June 11, 1981. American finished moving its headquarters from Grand Prairie, Texas to a building in Fort Worth located on the site of the old Greater Southwest Airport, near DFW Airport on January 17, 1983; the airline began leasing the facility from the airport, which owns the facility. By 1984, the American hub occupied most of Terminal 3E and part of Terminal 2E. American’s hub grew to fill all of Terminal 2E by 1991. American also began long-haul international service from DFW, adding flights to London in 1982 and Tokyo in 1987.
Delta Air Lines also built up a hub operation at DFW, which occupied most of Terminal 4E through the 1990s. The Delta hub peaked around 1991, when Delta had a 35% market share at DFW; its share was halved by 2004, after many of its mainline routes were downgraded to more frequent regional jet service in 2003. Delta closed its DFW hub in 2004 in a restructuring of the airline to avoid bankruptcy, cutting its DFW operation to only 21 flights a day from over 250 and redeploying aircraft to hubs in Cincinnati, Atlanta and Salt Lake City. Prior to the closure, Delta had a 17.3% market share at DFW. After the closing of Delta’s hub, DFW offered incentives to Southwest Airlines to relocate its service to DFW from Love Field, but Southwest, as in the past, chose to stay at Love Field.
DFW has been a hub for Braniff International Airways, Braniff 2, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines and Texas International Airlines.
In 1989 the airport authority announced plans to rebuild the existing terminals and add two runways. After an environmental impact study was released the following year, the cities of Irving, Euless and Grapevine sued the airport over its extension plans, a battle that was finally decided (in favor of the airport) by the US Supreme Court in 1994. The seventh runway opened in 1996. The four primary north–south runways (those closest to the terminals) were all lengthened from 11,388 feet (3,471 m) to their present length of 13,400 feet (4,084 m). The first, 17R/35L, was extended in 1996 (at the same time the new runway was constructed) and the other three (17C/35C, 18L/36R and 18R/36L) were extended in 2005. DFW is now the only airport in the world with 4 serviceable paved runways longer than 4,000 metres (13,123 ft).
Terminal D, built for international flights, and DFW Skylink, a modern bidirectional people mover system, opened in 2005.
From 2004 to 2012, DFW was one of two US Army “Personnel Assistance Points” which received US troops returning from wars in Iraq and Afghanistan for rest and recuperation. This ended on March 14, 2012 and Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport became the sole Personnel Assistance Point.
Qantas operates what was the world’s longest nonstop service route from DFW to Sydney between September 29, 2014, and March 1, 2016. However it was bumped down to 2nd longest flight in the world on March 1, 2016, when Emirates began flying to Auckland from Dubai.
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport has five terminals and 165 gates. The airport is designed with expansion in mind and can theoretically accommodate up to thirteen terminals and 260 gates, although this level of expansion is unlikely to be reached in the foreseeable future. The first four terminals were designed by Hellmuth, Obata and Kassabaum and Brodsky, Hopf & Adler.
The terminals at DFW are semicircular (except for the newest terminal, Terminal D, which is a “square U” shape) and built around the airport’s central north–south arterial road, Spur 97, also known as “International Parkway”. Until the late 1990s, they were designated by a number (2 being northernmost, 4 being southernmost) and a letter suffix (“E” for East, “W” for West). This system was later scrapped and the terminals are now lettered from A to E. Terminals A, C, and E (from north to south) are on the east side of the airport, while Terminals B and D (from north to south) are on the west side.
DFW’s terminals are designed to minimize the distance between a passenger’s car and airplane, and to reduce traffic around terminals. A consequence of this layout is that connecting passengers had to walk extremely long distances between gates (in order to walk from one end of the semicircular concourse to the other, one must walk the entire length; there were no shortcuts between the ends). The original people mover train (Airtrans APM, later the American Airlines TrAAin) which opened with the airport was notoriously slow (17 mph (27 km/h)), uni-directional (running only in a counter-clockwise direction) and was located outside the secured area (thus requiring travelers to go through the security process again). It was replaced by SkyLink in April 2005 after serving approximately 250 million passengers. Skylink serves all five terminals at a considerably higher speed (up to 35 mph (56 km/h)), is bi-directional, and is located inside the secured area.
DFW Airport is undergoing a $2.7 billion “Terminal Renewal and Improvement Program” (TRIP), which encompasses renovations of the original four terminals (A, B, C and E). Work on the project began following the conclusion of Super Bowl XLV in February 2011. Terminal A was the first terminal to undergo these renovations. Gates A6–A16 were completed in April 2013, the whole terminal should be completed sometime in 2016 and the entire TRIP project should be complete by the end of 2020.
The airport has completed a US $2.8 million renovation of Terminal D to accommodate the double-deck Airbus A380.
American Airlines and its regional affiliate American Eagle have a large presence at Dallas/Fort Worth. The world’s largest airline, as of December 9, 2013, operates its largest hub at DFW. The two airlines operate at four of the five terminals at the airport. Terminal A, called “Terminal 2E” when the airport was opened, is fully occupied by American Airlines for domestic flights. Prior to the opening of Terminal D, Terminal A operated most of AA’s international flights at the airport. During the late 1990s, many American Eagle flights began moving to Terminal B. Before Terminal D was opened, American Eagle flights also used a satellite terminal (named Satellite Terminal A2) near Terminal A due to gate restraints. Passengers were taken to the satellite via shuttle buses from gate A6. Satellite Terminal A2 (Gates A2A–A2N) was abandoned in 2005 when all American Eagle flights were consolidated into Terminals B and D. This terminal is used to house all of American’s A321, 737, and 757.
Terminal A has been undergoing renovation, in phases, with two of the three phases now complete.
An American Airlines Admirals Club is located at Gate A24.
Terminal A has 30 gates: A8–A25, A28–A29, A33–A39.
Gates A34–A39 were closed for renovations beginning in March 2016.
This terminal was called “Terminal 2W” when the airport was opened. It was occupied by Braniff International Airways which was the largest carrier to open DFW in 1974. Braniff was its main occupant until May 1982. The Inter-Faith Chapel near United’s former gates commemorates the airline. American Eagle occupies all gates at Terminal B. AirTran Airways, Frontier Airlines, Midwest Airlines and US Airways (including the former America West Airlines) relocated to Terminal E in 2006. On December 13, 2009, United moved to Terminal E to join its new alliance (and later merger) partner – Continental. At that point American Eagle became the sole operator in Terminal B. Prior to the opening of Terminal D, all foreign flag carriers operated from this terminal.
Along with the TRIP improvements, a new 10-gate stinger concourse off of Terminal B was constructed between gates B28 and B33 to accommodate growth. The stinger concourse makes Terminal B the largest terminal at DFW in terms of number of gates.
An American Airlines Admirals Club is located at Gate B3.
Terminal B has 49 gates: B2–B3 (FIS optional), B4–B29, B30–B39 (North Stinger), B40–B49.
Gates B18–B23 were closed for renovations beginning in March 2016.
American Airlines operates all the gates at Terminal C, originally called “Terminal 3E,” for only domestic flights. This terminal houses American’s MD-80s, some 767s, and their A319s. The Hyatt Regency DFW hotel is directly adjacent to this terminal. A twin hotel building stood across International Parkway, but was demolished for the construction of Terminal D.
An American Airlines Admirals Club is located at Gate C20.
Terminal C has 31 gates: C2–C4, C6–C8, C10–C12, C14–C17, C19–C22, C24–C33, C35–C37 and C39.
Terminal D (International)
International Terminal D is a 2,000,000 sq ft (186,000 m2) facility capable of handling 32,000 passengers daily or 11.7 million passengers annually. The terminal features 200 ticketing positions and a federal inspection facility capable of processing 2,800 passengers per hour. The concession areas consist of 100,000 sq ft (9,290 m2) of retail, including many dining and retail options. Stores include Mont Blanc, La Bodega Wines, Brookstone, L’Occitane and many others.
The terminal was designed by HKS, HNTB and Corgan Associates. Austin Commercial was Construction Manager at Risk, L.A. Fuess Partners, Campbell and Associates, and Walter P. Moore after the structural engineers. Friberg Associates, Inc., Carter/Burgess, LopezGarcia Group, and DFW Consulting Group water the mechanical electrical and plumbing engineers. It officially opened on July 23, 2005.
The 298-room Grand Hyatt DFW Hotel is directly connected to the terminal. Under the Airport Access Authorization to Commercial Establishments Beyond the Screen Checkpoint (AAACE) program, overnight guests at the hotel who are not flying can obtain a pass to enter the concourses to visit shops and restaurants, subject to screening by a law enforcement officer and an identity check against the government’s no-fly list. Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport is the only other airport participating in this program.
The eight-level parking garage has over 8,100 parking spaces and uses a Smart Technology System that lets guests know which floors are full. Air-conditioned skybridges with moving walkways and elevators connect the garage to the terminal, and an arrivals canopy roof shields pedestrians from inclement weather as they enter and exit the terminal.
On April 3, 2014 DFW Airport director Sean Donohue announced that Emirates Airlines would upgrade their service from the Boeing 777-200LR to the Airbus A380 from October 1, 2014. On May 7, 2014 Qantas announced an upgrade to A380 service beginning September 29, 2014, and the airport press agency announced that Gates 15 & 16 were being renovated to accommodate the A380 in anticipation of the new service. Terminal D had been designed with the A380 in mind; however, loading the double-deck aircraft requires 3 gates with a separate jet bridge to serve first class and business class passengers on the upper level, so the renovations included the addition of Gate 16X. On September 29, 2014, a Qantas A380–sporting a commemorative cowboy hat and bandana on the Kangaroo tail logo–inaugurated service at the remodeled gates.
An American Airlines Admirals Club is located at D24. A British Airways Lounge, a Korean Air Lounge, a Lufthansa Lounge and a QANTAS Business Lounge is located at D21. An American Express Centurion Lounge is located at D17.
Terminal D has 30 gates: D6–D8, D10–D12, D14, D15–D16–D16X (A380 gates), D17–D18, D20–D25, D27–D31, D33–D34, D36–D40.
Terminal E, originally called Terminal 4E, was occupied primarily by Delta Air Lines until Delta closed its hub in 2005 and retained only flights to its other hubs. Delta branded the terminal “Easy Street” and marketed this term to passengers. Today the terminal is used by all U.S.-based carriers at the airport other than American Airlines and Sun Country, and by Air Canada Express and WestJet USCBP precleared flights from Canada.
Though Delta no longer uses DFW as a hub, it remains the largest airline operating at terminal E, operating up to 50 flights per day.
It had customs facilities that were used when Delta operated flights to Frankfurt in the early 1990s and when Air France and Aeroméxico used to serve DFW before the International Terminal D was constructed. In the 2000s, SkyTeam partner airlines Continental and Northwest moved to gates adjacent to Delta.
Terminal E is distinctive in that it has a satellite terminal connected by an underground walkway. The satellite, which had been used by Delta and later used by Delta Connection carriers, was closed when Delta closed their DFW hub in 2005. It was briefly used in 2009 to house federal workers who evacuated New Orleans International Airport during Hurricane Gustav. It was refurbished and reopened in 2013 to house US Airways and Spirit Airlines while Terminal E was renovated. Terminal E is connected to the other terminals by SkyLink, but lacks a walkway to the other terminals. In October 2014, Delta and Alaska Airlines used the E satellite terminal, following the renovation project of gates E31–E38.
An interfaith chapel is located at Gate E4, a Delta Sky Club is located at gate E11, and a United Club is located at the mezzanine level of the E satellite concourse.
Terminal E has 35 gates: E2, E4–E18, E20–E21, E22–E30 (Satellite Terminal), E31–E38. Gates E2-E10 are closed for renovations, as of July 2016.
One of three terminal garages was being renovated in May 2016.
A sixth terminal, to be known as Terminal F, would be located directly south of Terminal D and across International Parkway from Terminal E, in the Express South parking lot. The Skylink was designed and built to accommodate Terminal F, as the track follows a roughly semicircular path over the parking lot, similar to its path through the other terminals, instead of running in a straight line between Terminals D and E; with straight sections that are long enough to allow for station platforms. DFW Airport CEO Sean Donohue has said that Terminal F “will likely be in our future,” as the airport anticipates “serving almost 70 million customers annually by the end of the decade from the 60 million we serve today.” Donohue also stated that planning would begin in 2015.
With 578,906 tons of cargo handled in 2009, DFW was then the world’s 29th busiest cargo airport. In 2010 DFW International Airport earned the distinction of “Best cargo airport in North America 2010” from Air Cargo World, the air freight’s industry’s leading publication. In 2013 Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport handled almost sixty-five percent of all aircraft cargo in Texas. Asia accounts for half of all cargo and Europe accounts for 30% of the cargo at DFW. On May 15, 2014 Ameriflight announced it would relocate its headquarters from Bob Hope Burbank Airport to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport to better serve its customers in North and South America
- The people mover system, named Skylink, was opened on May 21, 2005 and is the world’s largest high-speed airport train system. Totally automated, Skylink trains run every two minutes, and travel at speeds up to 35 mph (56 km/h). Skylink is double-tracked, permitting bi-directional operations. The Skylink system was acquired from Bombardier Transportation and connects all terminals on the secure side.
- Skylink replaced the original Airtrans system (part of which was later operated as American Airlines’ TrAAin System), a state-of-the-art people mover at the time of the airport’s opening. It served the airport for 31 years from 1974–2005 and transported a quarter of a billion passengers between DFW’s four terminals and employee facilities, logging a total of 97,000,000 miles (156,000,000 km) on its fleet. Over time, its top speed of 17 mph (27 km/h) and uni-directional guideway made it impractical for connecting passenger transfers. The system was decommissioned soon after Skylink opened as a modern replacement; the old guideways were left in place throughout the airport.
- Terminal Link connects all terminals with a shuttle bus system on the non-secure side.
- A consolidated rental car facility is located at the south end of the airport and connected to all terminals by a dedicated network of shuttle buses. Hosting ten rental car companies, the center was completed in March 2000.
To and from airport
- DFW is served by the Trinity Railway Express commuter rail line at CentrePort/DFW Airport Station, south of the airport. The line serves both downtown Dallas and downtown Fort Worth.
- Dallas Area Rapid Transit offers bus service to Downtown Irving/Heritage Crossing Station and Southwestern Medical District/Parkland Station on route 408 from the Remote South Parking facility. As well, route 500 connects Terminal A directly with CentrePort/DFW Airport Station to the south, and the current Orange Line terminus of Belt Line Station to the east.
- On August 18, 2014 DART opened DFW Airport Station located between Terminals A and B. This provides direct rail service on the Orange Line to Dallas and Las Colinas (with a later extension to DFW North Station). These stations will become major stations for the future TEX Rail under development by the Fort Worth Transportation Authority and DART’s Cotton Belt Rail Line.
The DFW Airport Area is served by the International Parkway (partially State Highway 97 Spur), which runs through the center of the airport, connecting to the Airport Freeway (State Highway 183) on the southern side of the airport and the John W. Carpenter Freeway (State Highway 114). The International Parkway continues north of State Highway 114 carrying the State Highway 121 designation for a short while until its interchange with the Lyndon B. Johnson Freeway (I-635), where State Highway 121 continues north as the Sam Rayburn Tollway. IH 35 E is easily accessible by going north on the International Parkway.