Salt Lake City Airport (SLC)
Salt Lake City International Airport, recognised by the IATA code of SLC and its ICAO code of KSLC, is a major airport in the United States of America. It is served by a number of well known airline companies, and is a hub for a few of them as well. Since it is a large airport handling over twenty million passengers per annum, it has all the necessary facilities for its arriving and departing passengers, and several options for ground transportation as well. The airport is also currently being connected to the light rail system of Salt Lake City.
The SLC Airport is located in the American state of Utah, which is surrounded by the states of Idaho and Wyoming in the north, Colorado to the east, Nevada to the west and Arizona to the south. The airport is approximately five miles from downtown Salt Lake City, and just a fifteen minute drive from the Salt Palace Convention Centre and many of the downtown hotels. The suburbs surrounding the airport include Rose Park and Poplar Grove, while the Skypark Airport and the South Valley Regional Airport are found close by as well. The major airport of Salt Lake City is just off the Interstate 80, and can be easily reached from all directions. Passengers arriving in their own vehicles can park at the Hourly/Daily Garage adjacent to the terminals, or in the Economy Lot that is served by free shuttle buses.
A number of public transportation services are available to and from the airport. UTA buses travel to the airport from the city centre approximately every half an hour on weekdays during daytime hours, and every hour in the evenings. Over weekends their schedules may vary. Taxis are also considered as very convenient, costing just $20.00 to $25.00 from the city’s downtown area, or passengers could arrange a private shuttle service, from companies such as Alta Shuttle, All Resort Express, Canyon Transportation, Express Shuttle, Park City Transportation and Xpress 4 Less, who all have counters in the terminal buildings. Many of these shuttles travel to and from the ski resorts of the area, which are very popular in the winter season. Currently the airport is not directly served by trains, however, by 2014, it will have its own light rail station, and trains will run every fifteen minutes from the airport to downtown Salt Lake City. The project is currently under construction, and will include many stations along the way. The track will run along North Temple.
Salt Lake City International Airport dates back to 1911, when an airfield was chosen in the Basque Flats area. The first few years of the airfield’s existence were mainly used for training and acrobatic flights, but an air mail service began in 1920 by the United States Postal Service. Additional airline carriers came in, and further facilities were constructed to support the mail transport operations of the airfield. In the 1930’s, the airfield officially became known as the Salt Lake City Municipal Airport, and the first official terminal building was built at a cost of $52,000. The airport also became one of the stops used by United Airlines between New York and San Francisco. The new airport was then used as a base for the United States Air Force in WWII, and received a third runway for its aircraft.
After the war, commercial activity resumed, and several flights per week were available. A second terminal was built as well, on the west side of the airport. It took seven years to build. In 1968, the airport became international, with regular flights to Calgary in Canada by Western Airlines. Its name therefore changed to the Salt Lake City International Airport. In later years Western Airlines merged with Delta Air Lines, the company that currently uses the airport as its fourth largest hub. Over the years the two terminals were greatly expanded, to accommodate growth in the number of passengers handled, a short-term parking garage was built, an existing runway was lengthened and a new runway was constructed. The airport also received a new control tower 328 feet tall, and new concourse areas for international operations and for SkyWest Airlines.
Today SLC has two terminal buildings that consist of five concourses (A, B, C, D and E). Terminal 1 houses Concourse A with gates A1 – A9 and Concourse B with gates B1 – B22. These concourses are used by airline companies such as American Airlines, American Eagle, United Airlines, Southwest Airlines and United Express. Terminal 2 houses Concourse C with gates C1 – C13, Concourse D with gates D1 – D13 and Concourse E, with gates E60 – E85. International operations take place at gates D2, D4 and D6. The airport covers a large area of more than 7,700 acres, or 3,116 hectares, and has four runways, one of which is only used for general aviation purposes. On the east side of the airport grounds the Utah Air National Guard operates the Salt Lake City Air National Guard Base, and at the south end the Wingpointe 18-hole golf course can be found.
In future years, improvements will be made to the airport’s runways, and a third terminal and two new concourses will be added. The new concourses will be linked by an automated underground train, as one will be a satellite terminal with 15 mainline gates and 44 regional jet gates. The first concourse will be attached to the new terminal, and will have 31 mainline gates. Current airport buildings may be demolished to leave room for this expansion. Further improvements will include a new parking garage and expanded cargo facilities.
Salt Lake City is a major hub for Delta Air Lines, and the Delta Connection carriers of Compass Airlines and SkyWest Airlines. Delta and SkyWest mainly operate from Terminal 2. Although the majority of the airport’s flights are domestic, a significant number of international flights are offered as well, to Cancun and Puerto Vallarta in Mexico, Vancouver in Canada and to Paris in France. The most popular flights, however, are those to Denver, Phoenix, Atlanta, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Seattle, Dallas/Fort Worth, Portland, New York City and Minneapolis. The airport is currently rated as the 21st busiest in the country and the 26th busiest in North America for passenger traffic, and as the 24th busiest in the world for aircraft movements.
Salt Lake City International Airport facilities include a Sky Club operated by Delta Air Lines in the connector area between Concourses C and D, currency exchange services, banking and cash machines, FedEx drop boxes, mail boxes, fax and photocopying services, medical assistance, restrooms that are accessible to disabled passengers and baby-care areas. Free Wi-Fi services are also available, and car rental companies can be found on the lower level of the Hourly/Daily Parking Garage. In general, passengers will find all the facilities they require at Salt Lake City International Airport. Information is available at the information booths in the terminals, or passengers can contact the airport at 801-575-2400.
Visitor Information - Salt Lake City Airport
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