Thursday, January 24, 2019


Today's airport meeting attempted to blame shift the ongoing impasse betwixt airlines and the developer.

More to the point . . .


Given the recent approval ratings of the Commander-In-Chief, that's not a bad plan.

And so, a special thanks that THIS KICK-ASS KANSAS CITY INSIDER for an airport round-up share of today's hot mess . . . Read more:


The Aviation Committee psychodrama continued a dismal trend. With only one exception, City Council members failed again to ask exactly why the new airport is a drifting black hole of credibility. It isn’t clear why Council members’ brains are helpless bystanders. Failure to do their homework? Fear they might expose the truth?

The pending environmental assessment (EA) is an example. Until the EA is fully signed off, no construction, no bond money. So where, exactly, are the necessary signatures? In the opening minute of the meeting, Pat Klein, Aviation Director, revealed that nothing has changed with the EA since the last meeting of the Aviation Committee. Here is where the devil is humping the status quo. We learned at the last AC meeting the the EA requires seven signatures, two of which were (are apparently) still MIA.

Here’s what nobody on the Council was quick enough and/or ballsy enough to ask today and why it matters: Who, exactly, has signed at this point? Since the Council isn’t asking and the airport isn’t saying, let’s do a little detective work here at TKC. We know there are seven parties who must sign, including the FAA, the City, State Historic Preservation Office, Kaw Nation, Osage Nation, Pawnee Nation and Ponca tribe. Who are the hold outs at this point and why? Two signers seem like a no-brainer, the City and the SHPO, both of which accepted the EA months ago. The local FAA office seems a likely third signer because it conducted the EA. Who does that leave unsigned? Any way you slice this, it looks like at least one of the Native American tribes has not signed. If that’s true, why not?

The EA report stipulates that the airport will monitor construction in case it encounters buried archaeological deposits and/or unmarked human graves. Federal law and the SHPO say the airport must do this. However, a dispute has arisen over exactly how much archaeological monitoring should be done. The EA calls only for monitoring ground disturbance around the new terminal building, but others are calling for looking at all ground disturbance, including new access roads, utilities trenches, areas where fill may be mined, etc. Is one or more parties holding out for an expanded monitoring plan? If so, is this like the clash with Native Americans over the Dakota Access Pipeline? Or is it some other problem with the EA? We don’t know, but shouldn’t the Council be trying to find out what’s jamming up the EA and let the rest of us know what’s going on?

Today’s three-card monte focused on food courts and premium lounges. Happier topics, certainly, than reminding everyone that nobody knows when roadblocks like the EA or the airlines’ lease and use agreement will be cleared.

The feel-good climax of today’s meeting was revelation that artwork will be chiseled out of the floor of existing terminals to be cemented into the walkways of the new terminal. This, you see, will allow kids to play the KCI equivalent of Pokemon Go, running around the new terminal looking for old bits of art bling. This was described as bringing a world-class airport experience to KC. Marvelous. Who can doubt travelers from Jakarta to Berlin lust for their kids to wander KCI corridors looking for obscure bits of art sunk into the floors. Councilwoman Heather Hall was the only adult in the room cruel enough to snap everyone out of cute, reminding that until things like the EA and airlines agreement are done, all we have at this point is diversionary cuteness.

Check the links:

Fox4KC: Terrazzo floors will be reused in new KCI Terminal

KCUR: Federal Shutdown Holds Up KCI Terminal Approvals, So Council Checks Out Some Design Ideas

FT: US airports start to feel the strain of the government shutdown

Developing . . .


Anonymous said...

the irony of the wait is that they promised us shorter lines for the new airport. Definitely just another kcmo bait and switch.

Anonymous said...

This will be a great 2030 addition to kcmo. Really can't see it being done anytime sooner. And if they're already talking about using some of the old airport, why can't we mention that more people would rather talk about a remodel than making this horrible mistake.

Granger said...

Thanks for the update but there's one thing that needs to be mentioned. The real cost of the airport is 4 billion dollars and rising, not the 1.9 billion dollar misnomer. News media just keeps repeating that figure and it's not just wrong but also misleading to taxpayers. Sad.

Anonymous said...


Super Dave said...

This Mayor and council currently in office don't have the ability to see an undertaking of this magnitude taking place. They move around acting like they have a clue what is going on when in all reality they act like a deer caught in the headlights of a vehicle. The are frozen in place not sure when or how to move forward. I'm sure they would love to blame their failings upon another.

Anonymous said...


Yep you got it

Anonymous said...

This is not a respectable process for the largest civic project of the city. This was all sly on the fly and egg ore and SOM gladly jumped on solely for cash not the welfare of the city. SOM and edge ore spent very little time thinking about this project, starting from a zero point knowledge of the city. The joker aviation committee may as well go head up SPace X, and see how well that does with their input. That they feel they can not revise this boondoggle makes their legacy even worse. SOM, the city should be flat out ashamed. Edgmore, one would expect them smother anything that keeps them from altering their very poorly laid plans.
What is that rendering, there are 40 + Gates.
That the only thing the local MSN says is that they reusing the floors, and continue to be zombie cheerleaders with their legs spread is unbelievable.
No harm in revising, do not even care if it the same clowns doing the revising.

Anonymous said...

It is better to think twice and three times before pursuing this, SLy is right these things take time, so TAKE the time and do,it right. Citizens and legacies are not going to begrudge those taking the time to do it right, sat on this airport for 50 years and have to all the sudden be in a rush. All those involved should just congratulate themselves for kicking off a process that should have been done sometime/aanytime over the last 50 years, before TWA bailed and went to St. Louis like Southwest.

Anonymous said...

Does anybody realize how much more expensive it is to bust out terrazzo and re-lay it? At least twice as much as just buying it new, god damn these people are stupid

Anonymous said...

Four billion dollars is probably a low estimate by now.
How much has already been spent on this and no one can honestly say that much, if any, progress has been made.
Thia will go on for years and don't think for a minute that money will continue to come out of the city's general fund.
This kind of incompetence is why no other jurisdictions in the metro are ever the least bit interested in "regional solutions".

Anonymous said...

The gov shutdown isn't helping but remember the problems with the airlines and the environmental study were going on long before parts of the government were shuttered. Local MSM reports are ridiculous, basically recycled airport press releases.

Anonymous said...

Jesus Christ, Jordon Pearce, 'the architect' is a 36 yr old with 5 years architectual experience:

Architectural Professional
Skidmore Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM)
June 2013 – Present 5 years 8 months
Full Court Press
Communications Consultant
Full Court Press
September 2007 – July 2010 2 years 11 months
Yale School of Architecture
Master of Architecture (M.Arch.)
2010 – 2013
Haverford College
Haverford College
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.), English Language and Literature/Letters
2001 – 2005

Anonymous said...

6:37 exactly, and they want to save some terrazo instead instead of reusing the termiinals and saving 10s of millions per gate. This project is a freakn JOKE.
Going to cost way moe than 4 billion, you got contractors thanking managers for having th econfidence in them as they estimate pricing on a plan that has no details.

Anonymous said...

I would like to know what that cavernous, narrow road entry between the facade and the parking garage looks like without the imaginary sunshine illuminating it.

Anonymous said...

i can not pay attention to this shit anymore, it's too ridiculous. Jolie and her LGBT platform, therefore she is competent, is complete bullshit and she can kiss my ass.
When someone actually starts out communicating why there is this need to smoosh everything into the site of teminal A, would be a good start. Is that per the airlines? WTH, where did that come from? An acceptance of an atrophied airport in a supposedly expanding metro area. HOw much parking does this place need for 39 gates. Going to dig up all the concrete at the extended long term parking lots and plant landscaping that you can not see while in the airport? More surface parking at the sites of terminal b&c? This has not been thought through at all, and certainly have no idea what airlines or the aviation or air cargo cargo community are thinking if they think anything at all.