Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport

Infobox Airport
name = Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport

image-width = 175

image2-width = 150
caption2 = FAA Airport Diagram
type = Public
owner = MAC
city-served = flagicon|United States Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota
elevation-f = 841
elevation-m = 256
coordinates = coord|44|52|55|N|093|13|18|W|type:airport_region:US
website = [http://www.mspairport.com/ www.mspairport.com]
r1-number = 4/22
r1-length-f = 11,000
r1-length-m = 3,354
r1-surface = Concrete
r2-number = 12R/30L
r2-length-f = 10,000
r2-length-m = 3,048
r2-surface = Asphalt/Concrete
r3-number = 12L/30R
r3-length-f = 8,200
r3-length-m = 2,499
r3-surface = Asphalt/Concrete
r4-number = 17/35
r4-length-f = 8,000
r4-length-m = 2,438
r4-surface = Concrete
stat-year = 2007
stat1-header = Passengers
stat1-data = 35,157,322
stat2-header = Traffic Movements
stat2-data = 452,972
footnotes = Source: Passenger & traffic statistics from MSP airport. [ [http://www.mspairport.com/msp/stats/ops_reports.aspx Passenger and traffic statistics for 2007] ]

Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport airport codes|MSP|KMSP|MSP is the largest and busiest airport in the five-state upper Midwestern region of Minnesota, Iowa, South Dakota, North Dakota, and Wisconsin.

In terms of passengers, Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport is the twelfth busiest airport in the United States (2006), [http://www.faa.gov/news/updates/busiest_airports/index.cfm?airportType=All&year=2006 United States' largest airports by number of passengers.] Retrieved on October 30 2007.] and twenty-sixth busiest airport in the world in 2007. It is also home to the Minneapolis-Saint Paul Joint Air Reserve Station. Airlines out of Minneapolis/St. Paul International airport serve 131 nonstop markets from MSP, including 116 domestic and 14 international markets. Compared to other metropolitan areas in the United States, only Denver serves slightly more non-stop markets per capita.

The airport, including both passenger terminal buildings, is mostly located in the Census-designated place of Fort Snelling in an unincorporated part of Hennepin County. Small sections of the airport are within the city limits of Minneapolis and Richfield. The airport is across the Mississippi River from St. Paul. The terminal exits of the airport are minutes away from the Mall of America; careful flight pattern planning ensures that aircraft never fly over the mall at low altitude. It is the largest 'origin and destination' (O&D) airport for Northwest Airlines, Northwest Airlink partners Compass Airlines, Mesaba Airlines, and Pinnacle Airlines, in terms of passengers carried and revenues [http://www.fargoairport.com/FAR071.pdf] (all but Compass and Pinnacle having headquarters nearby), the airport is Northwest Airlines busiest hub overall. It also serves as the hub for Sun Country Airlines. Northwest Airlines accounts for more than 80% of the airport's passenger traffic. It is operated by the Metropolitan Airports Commission, which also handles operation of six smaller airports in the region.

The airport first came into being when several local groups came together to take control of the former bankrupt Twin City Speedway race track, giving the airport its original name, Speedway Field. Soon after, in 1921, the airport was renamed Wold-Chamberlain Field for the World War I pilots Ernest Groves Wold and Cyrus Foss Chamberlain. In 1944, the site was renamed to Minneapolis-St. Paul Metropolitan Airport/Wold-Chamberlain Field, with "International" replacing "Metropolitan" four years later. Today, it is very rare to see the Wold-Chamberlain portion of the name used anywhere. In 1938 Howard Hughes briefly stopped at Wold-Chamberlain Field on his round the world flight.


Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport has two terminals, both of which are named for famous Minnesotans: the Lindbergh Terminal (named after the aviator Charles Lindbergh) and the much smaller Humphrey Terminal (named for former US Vice President Hubert Humphrey). Lindbergh Terminal officially has seven concourses, lettered A-G, with the Humphrey terminal labeled as Concourse H. However, this may change in the future, since future expansion plans call for the adding of a Concourse H to the Lindbergh Terminal. United Airlines is closing its Red Carpet club in the Lindbergh Terminal located at concourse E, but United Airlines might open a new Red Carpet club at the Humphrey Terminal when it's expanded.

Like many other airports, MSP interconnects with several other forms of transportation. Several large parking ramps are available for cars. Most other connections are made at the Hub Building and adjacent Transit Center, which has city and shuttle bus, taxi, light-rail, and rental car service. Two trams (people movers) are at the airport. One carries passengers from the main section of Lindbergh Terminal to the Hub Building, and another runs along the long Concourse C in that terminal.

The airport is near Fort Snelling, the site of one of the earliest European settlements in the area. Both the Mississippi and Minnesota rivers flow nearby. Minnesota State Highway 5 provides the closest entrance to the Lindbergh Terminal, just a short distance from Interstate 494. The Humphrey Terminal is accessed via the 34th Avenue exit from I-494, which runs past Fort Snelling National Cemetery. Northwest Airlines has hangars arranged along I-494 and 34th Avenue, so it's possible to see airliners undergoing maintenance while driving past.

The Hiawatha Line light-rail has stops at both the Hub Building (Lindbergh Station) and Humphrey Terminal (Humphrey Station). It connects the airport with downtown Minneapolis as well as with the Mall of America in nearby Bloomington, and operates as a shuttle service between the two airport terminals. Travelers can use the rail line to go between the two sites at all times of day— it is the only part of the line that operates continuously through the night (the rest shuts down for about four hours early in the morning). Passengers going between the two terminals may ride free of charge, but those riding beyond the airport grounds must pay a standard fare. Two parallel tunnels for the line run roughly 70 feet (20 meters) below the airport, and at 1.7 miles (2.7 km) in length are the longest tunnels on the route. The Lindbergh Terminal station is the only one underground on the line, as the rails return to the surface near Humphrey Terminal. Due to current concerns about terrorism, a great deal of effort went into ensuring that the tunnels are highly blast-resistant. The underground portion was the costliest section of the rail project.

Northwest Airlines has expanded operations at the airport over the years. In the past, Northwest and others have proposed moving out of MSP airport and building a new airport on the fringes of the Twin Cities metro area to handle large jets and international traffic. Minneapolis and other neighboring cities were concerned that such a move would have a negative economic impact, so an arrangement was made where the Metropolitan Airports Commission would outfit many homes in the vicinity of the airport with sound insulation and air conditioning so that indoor noise could be reduced. A citizen group named ROAR (Residents Opposed to Airport Racket) was created in 1998 and helped push the MAC to make these concessions. Later, in 2004, the MAC voted to reduce funding for the soundproofing projects, stating in part that the economic climate had turned in the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks. Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak, who had been a founding member of ROAR, promised that the city would challenge the funding changes.

The 1970 disaster film "Airport" was partially filmed at MSP, filling in for a fictional Chicago airport. It was followed by several sequels and was a prototype for many disaster films that followed. The airport used colors as the method for naming different concourses for many years, a convention that was duplicated in the movie. Starting in 2000, MSP switched to lettered concourses, which has become standard practice at airports around the world. The color names still survive as the names for the Lindbergh Terminal parking ramp wings.

Aeromexico has been granted by the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) to start non-stop Mexico City-Minneapolis service, but Aeromexico has not made an announcement about service to Minneapolis. The city of Minneapolis would like to give incentives to Lufthansa to start Frankfurt, Germany-Minneapolis service non-stop. Virgin America lists Minneapolis as one of 30 cities it expects to serve in the next 5 years. In 1999 British Airways was considering starting non-stop service from its London Gatwick or London Heathrow hub to Minneapolis. Northwest Airlines has considered starting non-stop Minneapolis-Shanghai service using new Boeing 787 aircraft in 2009. Kenya Airways and the Metropolitan Airports Commission were in talks about starting Nairobi-Paris-Minneapolis service. In 2000 British Midland sent an application to the DOT to start non-stop service from Manchester International Airport and London Heathrow to Minneapolis. A new carrier will start international air service in Minneapolis this fall, but the Metropolitan Airports Commission has not yet said which carrier. This year the Metropolitan Airports Commission has talked with British Airways, Aeromexico and Lufthansa about service to Minneapolis.

MSP 2020 Vision

In 2004, Northwest Airlines proposed expanding the Lindbergh Terminal to accommodate growing flight operations in a plan now known as MSP 2020 Vision. The proposed expansion included moving all airlines other than Northwest and its SkyTeam alliance airline partners to the Humphrey Terminal. This reignited concerns about Northwest Airlines' control of the Minneapolis-St. Paul commercial air service market with some claiming that Northwest uses its market position to inflate airfares. While AirTran Airways voiced opposition to the plan, American Airlines and United Airlines remained neutral on the move since both had exclusive terminals at their own main hubs. In May 2005, the MAC approved the plan with the following conditions:

*The Humphrey Terminal will be expanded to 22 gates, over double its current size
*Another parking ramp will be constructed at Humphrey
*Northwest and other SkyTeam airlines will have exclusive rights to the entire Lindbergh Terminal
*Non-SkyTeam airlines will use the Humphrey Terminal
*Concourse C will be converted into a regional jet terminal
*A new Concourse H will be built on the site of the current NWA Building B

The move was planned to take place in 2007, but with the bankruptcy of Northwest and Mesaba, the expansion plan has been delayed by at least a year, and potentially longer. However, certain aspects of the plan have been implemented or are currently in progress, such as the moving of Midwest Airlines, AirTran Airways, and Icelandair to the Humphrey Terminal, and the construction of an additional parking ramp at the Humphrey Terminal.

Terminals, airlines, and destinations

Lindbergh Terminal

Concourse A

* Northwest Airlines
** Northwest Airlink operated by Mesaba Airlines (Aberdeen (SD), Appleton, Atlanta, Bay City/Saginaw, MI, Bemidji, Bismarck, Brainerd, Casper, Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, Chisholm-Hibbing, Dallas/Fort Worth, Des Moines, Dubuque, Duluth, Eau Claire, Ft. Dodge, Grand Forks, Hancock, Hartford/Springfield, Houston-Intercontinental, Indianapolis, International Falls, Iron Mountain, La Crosse, Marquette, Mason City, Moline/Quad Cities, New Orleans [seasonal] , Peoria, Rapid City, Rhinelander, Richmond, Rochester (MN), Sioux City, Sioux Falls, St. Cloud, Thunder Bay, Waterloo, Watertown (SD), Wausau)
** Northwest Airlink operated by Pinnacle Airlines (Albany, Appleton, Asheville, Bismarck, Casper, Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, Charleston (SC) [seasonal] , Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky, Cleveland, Columbus (OH), Dayton, Des Moines, Duluth, Eau Claire, Fargo, Fort Wayne, Grand Forks, Grand Rapids, Green Bay, Greensboro,Hancock, Harrisburg, Helena, Idaho Falls, Kalamazoo, Kansas City, Knoxville, La Crosse, Lincoln, Little Rock, Louisville, Madison, Moline/Quad Cities, Montréal, Myrtle Beach, Nashville, Norfolk, Northwest Arkansas/Fayetteville, Oklahoma City, Omaha, Pittsburgh, Rapid City, Regina, Richmond, Rochester (MN), Rochester (NY), Salt Lake City, Savannah [seasonal] , Sioux City, Sioux Falls, South Bend, Springfield (MO), St. Louis, Toronto-Pearson, Tulsa, Washington-Dulles, Waterloo, Wausau, White Plains, Wichita, Winnipeg)

Concourse B

* Northwest Airlines
** Northwest Airlink operated by Mesaba Airlines (See Concourse A)
** Northwest Airlink operated by Pinnacle Airlines (See Concourse A)

Concourse C

Originally, Concourses C and D were the Green Concourse.
* Northwest Airlines (Acapulco [seasonal] , Albuquerque, Amsterdam, Anchorage, Atlanta, Baltimore/Washington, Bangor [seasonal] , Billings, Bismarck, Boise, Boston, Bozeman, Buffalo [seasonal] , Cabo San Lucas [seasonal] , Calgary, Cancún, Cedar Rapids/Iowa City, Charlotte, Chicago-Midway, Chicago-O'Hare, Cleveland, Colorado Springs, Columbus (OH), Cozumel [seasonal] , Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Des Moines, Detroit, Duluth, Eagle/Vail [seasonal] , Edmonton, Fairbanks [seasonal] , Fargo, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Grand Cayman [seasonal] , Grand Forks, Grand Rapids, Great Falls, Green Bay, Hartford/Springfield, Hayden/Steamboat [seasonal] , Honolulu, Houston-Intercontinental, Indianapolis, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo [seasonal] , Jackson Hole [seasonal] , Jacksonville, Kalispell, Kansas City, Lansing, La Crosse, Las Vegas, Liberia (CR) [seasonal, ends January 2009] , London-Heathrow, Los Angeles, Louisville, Madison, Manzanillo [seasonal] , Mazatlan [seasonal] , Memphis, Miami, Milwaukee, Minot, Missoula, Montego Bay [seasonal] , Myrtle Beach [seasonal] , Nashville, New Orleans [seasonal] , New York-JFK, New York-LaGuardia, Newark, Omaha, Orlando, Palm Springs [seasonal] , Paris-Charles de Gaulle [seasonal] , Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, Portland (OR), Providence, Puerto Vallarta [seasonal] , Punta Cana [seasonal, ends January 2009] , Raleigh/Durham, Rapid City, Rochester (MN), Sacramento, Saginaw, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, San Juan [seasonal] , San Jose (CA), Santa Ana/Orange County, Seattle/Tacoma, Sioux Falls, Spokane, St. Louis, Tampa, Tokyo-Narita, Toronto-Pearson, Traverse City, Tucson, Vancouver [seasonal] , Washington-Dulles, Washington-Reagan, Winnipeg)
** Northwest Airlink operated by Compass Airlines (Austin, Boston, Cedar Rapids, Chicago-Midway, Cleveland, Dallas/Fort Worth, Fargo, Great Falls, Green Bay, Houston-Intercontinental, Kalispell, La Crosse, Louisville, Madison, Manchester (NH), Missoula, Nashville, Newark, Norfolk, Omaha, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Regina, Saginaw, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, Saskatoon, Vancouver, Washington-Dulles)
** Northwest Airlink operated by Mesaba Airlines (See Concourse A)
** Northwest Airlink operated by Pinnacle Airlines (See Concourse A)

Concourse D

Originally, Concourses C and D were the Green Concourse.
* Northwest Airlines (See Concourse C)
** Northwest Airlink operated by Compass Airlines (See Concourse C)

Concourse E

Originally, Concourse E was the Blue Concourse.
* Air Canada
** Air Canada Jazz (Toronto-Pearson)
* Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) [begins October 26]
* American Airlines (Chicago-O'Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami)
** AmericanConnection operated by Chautauqua Airlines (St. Louis)
** AmericanConnection operated by Trans States Airlines (St. Louis)
* Continental Airlines (Houston-Intercontinental, Newark)
** Continental Express operated by ExpressJet Airlines (Cleveland, Houston-Intercontinental, Newark)
* Delta Air Lines (Atlanta, Salt Lake City)
** Delta Connection operated by Atlantic Southeast Airlines (Atlanta)
** Delta Connection operated by Comair (Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky, New York-JFK)
** Delta Connection operated by Freedom Airlines (New York-JFK)
** Delta Connection operated by SkyWest Airlines (Atlanta, Salt Lake City)
* Frontier Airlines (Denver)
* United Airlines (Chicago-O'Hare, Denver)
** United Express operated by Shuttle America (Chicago-O'Hare)
* US Airways (Charlotte, Las Vegas, Philadelphia, Phoenix)
** US Airways Express operated by Republic Airlines (Philadelphia)

Concourse F

Originally, Concourse F was the Red Concourse.
* Northwest Airlines (See Concourse C)
** Northwest Airlink operated by Compass Airlines (See Concourse C)

Concourse G (International)

Originally, Concourse G was the Gold Concourse.
* Northwest Airlines (See Concourse C)
** Northwest Airlink operated by Compass Airlines (See Concourse C)

Humphrey Terminal

* AirTran Airways (Atlanta, Orlando, Tampa)
* Icelandair (Reykjavík-Keflavik [seasonal] )
* Midwest Airlines (Milwaukee)
** Midwest Connect operated by SkyWest Airlines (Milwaukee)
* Southwest Airlines (Chicago-Midway) [begins March 2009]
* Sun Country Airlines (Anchorage [seasonal] , Cabo San Lucas [seasonal] , Cancún, Cozumel [seasonal] , Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver [charter] , Fort Myers, Harlingen [seasonal] , Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo [seasonal] , Las Vegas, Laughlin/Bullhead City, Los Angeles [ends January 2009] , Manzanillo [seasonal] , Mazatlan [seasonal] , Miami [seasonal] , Montego Bay [seasonal] , New York-JFK [ends January 5] , Orlando, Palm Springs [seasonal] , Phoenix, Puerto Vallarta [seasonal] , Punta Cana [seasonal] , San Diego, San Francisco [ends January 2009] , Seattle/Tacoma [ends January 2009] , San Juan [seasonal] , St. Maarten [seasonal] , St. Petersburg/Clearwater [seasonal] , St. Thomas [seasonal] , Tucson [seasonal] , Washington-Dulles [seasonal] , West Palm Beach [seasonal] ) "Charter"
* Omni Air International
* Ryan International Airlines
* Xtra Airways

Cargo carriers

**ABX Air (Chicago-O'Hare, Wilmington (OH), San Francisco)
*Bemidji Airlines (Alexandria (MN), Bemidji, Brainerd, Duluth, Eveleth, Fergus Falls, Grand Rapids, La Crosse, Marshall, Rice Lake, Thief River Falls, Winona)
*Capital Cargo International Airlines (Calgary, Toledo)
*FedEx Express (Chicago-O'Hare, Columbus-Rickenbacker, Duluth, Fort Worth, Grand Forks, Indianapolis, Memphis, Milwaukee, Oakland, Sioux Falls, Venice)
*Kitty Hawk Aircargo (Denver, Fort Wayne, Portland (OR), Seattle/Tacoma)
*UPS Airlines (Louisville, Peoria, Philadelphia, Rockford, Winnipeg)


Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport has four runways:
* Runway 4/22: 11,000 x 150 ft. (3,354 x 46 m), Surface: Concrete
* Runway 12R/30L: 10,000 x 200 ft. (3,048 x 61 m), Surface: Asphalt/Concrete
* Runway 12L/30R: 8,200 x 150 ft. (2,499 x 46 m), Surface: Asphalt/Concrete
* Runway 17/35: 8,000 x 150 ft. (2,438 x 46 m), Surface: Concrete

A number of buildings (including hangars) were demolished to make way for the runway protection zone of the new 17/35 landing strip, and plans for expansion at the Mall of America have been hampered by its construction. The new runway 17/35 opened in October, 2005. Aircraft using runway 35 fly slightly east of the Mall of America, overfly Interstate 494, and land only seconds later. Due to noise concerns from South Minneapolis residents, runway 17 was originally designated for use in emergency situations only. However, between 13 August 2007 and 18 October 2007 it was used regularly due to construction on runway 12R/30L.

ee also

* Minnesota World War II Army Airfields
* Central Air Defense Force (Air Defense Command)
* 31st Air Division (United States)


* [http://www.mspairport.com/ MSP International Airport] (official web site)
* [http://www.fargoairport.com/FAR071.pdf Minneapolis NWA's biggest hub] (see page 21)


External links

* [http://www.mspairport.com/ Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport] , official website
*PDF| [http://www.dot.state.mn.us/aero/avoffice/ops/airdir/pdf/mplsmsp.pdf Minnesota Airport Directory: Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (Wold-Chamberlain Field)] |227 KiB
* [http://www.macnoise.com/ MAC Noise Homepage] (official -- interactive maps of flights and noise data)
* [http://www.liveatc.net/feedindex.php?type=all Live Air Traffic Control streams including MSP]
* [http://freewebs.com/letlhflyatmsp/ Let Lufthansa fly in Minneapolis] , official website

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