Buffalo, NY: The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that Metro will be showcasing its first two newly rebuilt rail cars and placing them into service Friday, March 9 after a brief inaugural ride ceremony.
Rail cars 114 and 123, the first two of 27 rail cars that will each receive a $1.5 million top to bottom transformation, carried passengers for the first time today from LaSalle Station to Theater Station, where celebratory remarks were offered in the lobby of Shea's Performing Arts Center.
Henry M. Sloma, NFTA acting Chairman commented, "We are fully committed to providing our customers with the safest and most modern rail cars possible. These rebuilt vehicles accomplish that goal and our investment will add 25-years to the life of each car."
Eunice A. Lewin, Chairwoman of the NFTA's Surface Transportation Committee said, "I am definitely very pleased that our beautiful new cars are operating and serving our customers. We can now move forward with plans to provide our over 6 million annual rail customers with one of the most modern light rail systems in the nation."
The two cars have undergone a complete reconstruction in Dansville, NY, where AnsaldoBreda Inc. a unit of AnsaldoBreda S.p.A of Italy has been making wholesale improvements to the cars.
Giancarlo FantappiÃ¨, AnsaldoBreda President and CEO commented, "We are very happy that this achievement is being met with the cooperation of the entire Rehabilitation Team; NFTA, AnsaldoBreda, suppliers, etcâ€¦ As we move forward with the work on the remaining vehicles, we remain fully committed to the continued cooperation and successful completion of this project."
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director said, "Metro Rail provides the most environmentally efficient, pocketbook friendly and reliable mode of transportation for thousands of people traveling in and out of Buffalo each and every day. We are pleased to be able to provide these rebuilt rail cars so our riders can enjoy a safe and comfortable ride on Metro Rail for many years to come."
Each vehicle is equipped with a host of new safety features, passenger amenities and mechanical upgrades as part of the $45 million project. Enhanced passenger features include new colored seats and shells, HVAC components, interior emergency audio system, brighter energy efficient overhead lighting, anti-slip coating on door thresholds and interior/exterior LED signage. All cars will become uniform in appearance as the current orange and brown color scheme transitions to an all white background accented with silver and blue trim.
Americans with Disabilities related improvements include flashing lights at all doors, new gong sounds to signal the opening and closing of doors and automatic passenger stop announcements/LED displays to assist hearing and visually impaired passengers
The approximately 22,880 riders who use Metro Rail each weekday may not notice the myriad mechanical and safety improvements that each vehicle has received, but they are equally as significant to the project. Each car is now equipped with new suspensions, rebuilt gearboxes, air compression system, improved breaking system, overhauled traction motors, refurbished trucks with new wheels and 35,000 feet of new electrical wiring.
The operators' compartment has also been retooled with a new ergonomic design, improved HVAC system, enhanced electric window wipers and side window along with a new seat design for operator comfort.
A third rebuilt rail car is expected to be delivered in approximately seven months and will be required to undergo testing and 600 miles of commissioning, which is expected to take three to four months. There will be four rail cars in the rebuild cycle, starting a process whereby one completed car will be sent to Buffalo with Metro sending an additional car to Dansville until all remaining 25 cars are rebuilt. All cars are required to be completed within 36 months from the date of accepting the first two.
There will be formal remarks inside Shea's Performing Arts Center following the arrival of the train at Theater Station
Media is of course welcome to ride the train from LaSalle Station . . . no tickets will be required
WHO: Giancarlo Fantappie, President & CEO, AnsaldoBreda, Inc.; Kim Minkel, NFTA Executive Director; Acting NFTA Chairman, Henry Sloma; Eunice Lewin, Chairwoman NFTA Surface Transportation Committee, elected officials, Metro staff and winners of Metro's Inaugural Ride Contest
WHERE: Metro Rail LaSalle Station, 3040 Main Street, Buffalo, NY
WHEN: Friday, March 9 at 10 a.m. The train will depart LaSalle at 10 a.m. sharp.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that five public hearings will be held in Erie and Niagara counties regarding proposed service reductions to Metro Bus and Rail service.
The public is invited to attend and voice their comments during the public comment portion of the hearing, which will be preceded by an opportunity to speak with Metro personnel while viewing Metro service charts and a brief presentation by NFTA Executive Director Kimberley A. Minkel and Thomas George, the authority's Director of Surface Transportation.
The NFTA will stream live video of the Wednesday, Feb. 1, hearing starting at 12-noon from the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library. The video will be available on the authority's website at nfta.com.
The schedule of hearings is as follows:
Monday, Jan. 30, 6 p.m. ECC North Campus, Bldg. B, Bretschger Hall, Room 401
Tuesday, Jan. 31, 6 p.m. Niagara Falls City Hall Chambers
Wednesday, Feb. 1, Noon and 6 p.m. Buffalo & Erie County Public Library Auditorium
Thursday, Feb. 2, 6 p.m. ECC South Campus, Building #5 Cafeteria
Comments can also be e-mailed to email@example.com or mailed to Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, 181 Ellicott St., Buffalo, NY 14203, Attention: Metro Service Planning. Comments must be received by Thursday, Feb. 2, to be included in the public record.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that Metro Rail will operate modified service Sunday, Jan. 22, from approximately 7 p.m. through the end of the day due to maintenance work being performed in this segment of the system.
The outbound track will be out of service between Erie Canal Harbor Station and Humboldt Hospital Station. As a result, all service either inbound or outbound in this section will be provided from the inbound side.
Metro will have rail supervisors in the system to assist customers, there will be messages posted and public address announcements will be made at the stations to inform customers of the temporary change in service.
There may be minimal delays; customers are advised to please plan accordingly.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that the Buffalo Niagara International Airport is providing passengers' FREE wireless Internet access throughout the terminal.
The BNIA has entered into a three-year agreement with Advanced Wireless Group, LLC, to provide free high-speed Internet service to its customers. Advance Wireless, a leading provider of Wi-Fi wireless and wired high-speed Internet access has airport installations across the country including Boston, Atlanta, Miami, Indianapolis, Omaha and San Francisco.
Carmen A. Granto, NFTA commissioner and chairman of the authority's Aviation Committee said, "Staying connected and productive while away from the office or home has become essential to today's traveler. We are pleased to now be able to provide our customers with free connectivity. Passengers can sit down, relax, enjoy a meal, all while downloading files, sending e-mails, or checking the status of their connecting flight from their laptop or PDA at no cost to them."
"We are delighted to be associated with the Buffalo Niagara International Airport," said Scott Phillips, President of Advanced Wireless Group. "The airport is a first class addition to our network of airports and we look forward to a great working relationship."
Users of the system receive unlimited high-speed Internet access in 45-minute log- in sessions. Each free session requires the user to watch an approximately 30-second advertisement or fill out a brief survey prior to gaining each free connection. Technical support can be obtained 24/7 by calling toll free 1-877-294-9434. Access to high-speed Internet service is possible at almost any point within the departure level (upper level) and in the baggage claim area (lower level). Travelers are now able to surf the Internet, check e-mail, stock portfolios, stay on top of the latest news and weather or access corporate networks while sitting in a restaurant, an airline waiting area or retrieving their luggage.
About the Buffalo Niagara International Airport
Averaging 110 daily flights with nonstop service to 23 airports, the BNIA generates an overall economic impact of $1.07 billion in the Buffalo Niagara region. This past year the BNIA provided service to 5.2 million passengers and is committed to providing "first class" service to its customers each and everyday.
About Advanced Wireless Group, LLC
Founded in 2004, Advanced Wireless Group, LLC, headquartered in Miami, Fla., installs, manages and integrates wireless Internet networks into airports, municipalities, colleges and other large venues. For airport operators, AWG creates a new revenue stream by coupling public Wi-Fi Internet access with advertising, sponsorship, and media content, reaching key demographics through new media in a controlled setting.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced today that two of its Transportation Security Administration-certified Explosive Detection K-9 teams will be attending the Presidential Inauguration in Washington, D.C.
At the request of the United States Department of Homeland Security; the NFTA Transit Police Department will be sending two of its TSA-certified Explosive Detection K-9 teams to support the Jan. 21 Presidential Inauguration by working with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and the District of Columbia, Metro Transit Police Department.
NFTA Transit police officers Robert L. Bove and David A. Capretto, along with their K-9's Cora and Gino are set to depart Wednesday, Jan. 16 for Washington, D.C. They are two of 12 K-9 teams from across the country that will be assisting the TSA in providing addition security during inauguration proceedings.
George W. Gast, Chief of the NFTA Transit Police Department said, "I am extremely proud that our department will be represented during this high profile event. That we were considered speaks volumes about the capabilities and professionalism of our K-9 program and our officers."
The additional canine teams will be specifically used throughout the WMATA transportation system for the purpose of security related to the event. The use of the extra teams is proportionate to the overall increase in security and awareness during the inauguration, which draws thousands of visitors to our nation's capital.
All assisting law enforcement officers will be duly deputized as Federal Officers by the U.S. Marshall's Service for the requested period of service.
The TSA National Canine Program will be responsible for direct reimbursement for expenses relating to lodging and travel costs for both officers and their canine companions.
This is the second time the NFTA Police have sent a K-9 team to the inauguration. In 2008, one team was deployed to provide additional transit security coverage.
In addition, Metro Rail will add four early morning trips in each direction as follows:
Outbound from Erie Canal Harbor Station at 6, 6:30, 7 and 7:30 a.m.
Inbound from University Station at 6:30, 7, 7:30 and 8 a.m.
All Metro bus and rail schedules and Rider Alerts can be found online at nfta.com.
Buffalo, NY . . . The purpose of today's special meeting of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority's Board of Commissioners was to review and discuss the joint proposal submitted by the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation and the City of Buffalo to acquire the NFTA's real estate holdings on the Buffalo waterfront.
"Upon a thorough review of the proposal, the NFTA Board of Commissioners provided staff with guidance and direction on how to proceed in negotiating what hopefully will be a timely and mutually beneficial agreement," said Howard A. Zemsky, NFTA Chairman. "It is our intention to set up a meeting with all parties as soon as possible," he added.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced today that the identifying names of the parking facilities at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport are in the process of being changed.
Changes are being made to airport signage, websites and promotional material this month and are expected to be completed by Feb. 1.
The names will be changed as follows . . .
CURRENT - NEW
Short Term (garage) - Daily/Hourly Garage
Preferred Lot - Preferred Parking Lot
Long Term A - Long Term Parking Lot
Long Term B - Economy Parking Lot
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director said, "After consulting with our parking vendor and having received comments from customers; the names of the individual on site parking options are being changed to more accurately convey the differences between our various parking selections."
All of the BNIA parking lots offer convenient, free shuttle service to and from the terminal.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that Metro Rail will extend service an additional two hours Saturday, Dec. 31, to accommodate passengers attending the Annual New Year's Eve Ball Drop at Roosevelt Square and the downtown First Night Buffalo celebration.
Train service will run continuously, making stops at all stations during the extended service period. Trains will be on 20 minute intervals, with special trains intermingled as needed. It may be necessary to suspend service for a time due to the anticipated large crowd that gathers near the track bed in front of Roosevelt Square.
The last train is scheduled to leave Erie Canal Harbor Station heading outbound to University Station at 2 a.m. Sunday, New Year's Day following the events.
All Metro bus and rail schedules are available at www.nfta.com/metro, in addition to a trip planner that assists customers in determining which Metro routes to use to reach a specific destination.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that the sounds of the season returns to downtown Buffalo's bus station (the Metropolitan Transportation Center, 181 St.)
during December, featuring the musical talents of several local schools.
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director said, "The bus terminal is perfect place for a little extra holiday cheer. It is wonderful that our area schools take the time to share their spirit with busy travelers."
The following schools will be participating on the date and time indicated:
Wednesday, Dec. 14
Saint Mary of the Lake - 12:30 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 16
Akron High School (Roaming Santa's) - 8:30 a.m.
Cardinal O' Hara High School - 11:00 a.m. - with a special appearance by Santa.
Holy Angels Academy - 12:00 p.m. - with a special appearance by Santa.
Saturday, Dec. 17
Woodrow Wilson School - 11:00 a.m.
Monday, Dec. 19
Ambrose Catholic Academy - 12:00 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 20
Lake shore High - 11:00 a.m.
Each performance will feature between 15 and 45 students who will entertain for 30 to 60 minutes. All are welcome to attend.
NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. -Allegiant (NASDAQ: ALGT) today announces new, nonstop jet service between Niagara Falls, N.Y., and Orlando, Fla., via Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB), will begin Feb. 15, 2012. The company, known for its exceptional travel deals, will introduce the new service with fares as low as $79.99* one way.
"We're pleased to expand our brand of affordable and convenient travel options in Niagara Falls," Andrew C. Levy, Allegiant Travel Company President, said. "We are confident that the residents of Niagara Falls and southern Ontario will appreciate flying nonstop to Orlando and take advantage of the great deals we offer on hotels, car rentals and theme park tickets."
"We are extremely pleased that Allegiant is expanding its reach with new service to Sanford, Fla., even before they have had their inaugural flight from our airport," said Henry M. Sloma, acting chairman of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority. "Having additional flights coupled with a new destination gives testament to the viability and overall efficiency of operating from the NFIA."
The new flights will operate four times weekly between Niagara Falls International Airport (IAG) and Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB). For flight days and times please visit www.allegiant.com.
With plenty of shopping, dining, outdoor activities and entertainment, Orlando offers vacationers the perfect getaway. Located in the heart of Central Florida, Orlando is home to the world's most exciting theme parks including Walt Disney World, Universal Studios and SeaWorld. Orlando's famous International Drive is more than 10 miles long and features more than 100 hotels, 450 stores, several attractions and two major outlet malls. Orlando is also home to more than 175 golf courses, many of which were designed by pro golfers such as Greg Norman, Tom Watson, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus.
Allegiant provides low-cost car rental service through its partnership with Alamo Rent a Car.
Allegiant's $79.99* one-way introductory fare is limited, must be purchased by Dec. 21, 2011, and is valid for travel by May 15, 2012. Introductory fares are not available on all flights.
Reservations can be made on the airline's website at www.allegiant.com or by calling the company's travel experts at 702-505-8888.
About the $79.99* one-way fares:
Seats are limited. Fares are one-way and not available on all flights. Must be purchased by Dec. 21, 2011, for travel by May 15, 2012. Prices do not include PFC, segment tax or Sept. 11th security fee of up to $10.70 per segment. A segment is one take-off and one landing. A convenience fee of $10.00 per passenger, per segment is included in the introductory one-way fare. A fee of $14.99 per segment, will apply when purchased through Allegiant call centers. Purchases made at any Allegiant Airport Ticket Office will not incur a convenience or call center fee. For ticket counter hours of operation, please visit www.allegiant.com. When purchased at the time of booking, a checked bag fee of up to $29.99 per bag, per segment will apply for the first two (2) checked bags. If purchased at flight check-in, a fee of $35 per checked bag, per person, per segment will apply for the first two bags checked. Additional higher fees will apply for three or more checked bags. Fare rules, routes and schedules are subject to change without notice. Restrictions apply.
Allegiant, travel is our deal.
Las Vegas-based Allegiant Travel Company (NASDAQ: ALGT) has posted 35 consecutive quarters of profitability. The company is focused on linking travelers in small cities to world-class leisure destinations such as Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix-Mesa, Orlando, Fla., and Tampa/St. Petersburg, Fla. Through its subsidiary, Allegiant Air, the company operates a low-cost, high-efficiency, all-jet passenger airline offering air travel and hotel rooms, rental cars and other travel-related services. The company ranked ninth this year in Forbes' Best Small Companies. Allegiant was also recently named one of FORTUNE magazine's "100 Fastest-Growing Companies" for the second consecutive year. In 2011 and 2010 Allegiant ranked 64th and 25th, respectively, on FORTUNE magazine's Fastest-Growing Companies list. In 2010, Allegiant was ranked number one for low-cost carriers in Aviation Week's Top Performing Airline study. Receive breaking news from Allegiant by visiting Allegiant's Facebook Fan Page at www.facebook.com/Allegiant or follow Allegiant on Twitter at twitter.com/allegianttravel.
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that Friday, Dec. 2, starting at approximately 10 p.m. through Saturday, Dec. 3, at 4 p.m., Metro Rail's outbound track will be out of service from Amherst Street Station to LaSalle Station. Maintenance work being performed at the stations necessitates the closing of the outbound track.
As a result of the work, all boardings and departures for these stations will take place on the inbound side of the platform. There may be delays in service in both directions. Riders are advised to plan accordingly.
Metro will have rail supervisors in the system to assist customers, there will be messages posted and public address announcements will be made at the stations to inform passengers of the temporary change in service.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced it will host a Master Plan Update public workshop to present recommendations of future long-term improvements for the Buffalo Niagara International Airport. The workshop will take place Thursday, Nov. 17, from 7 to 9 p.m., at the Millennium Hotel, in the Roosevelt Room, 2040 Walden Ave., Cheektowaga, NY. Aviation consultant, McFarland Johnson, along with representatives from the NFTA and BNIA will be available to discuss and answer questions relating to the master plan and proposed long-term improvements for airport property.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced today that the Niagara Falls International Airport has almost doubled the number of parking spaces in Lot 3.
In an effort to accommodate the ever-increasing number of passengers using the NFIA, an additional 500 parking spaces have been added to the 600 that were created this past January, when the overflow lot was first opened.
Lot 3 located just south and across the street from the terminal on Niagara Falls Blvd. is fenced, paved, lighted, has shelters in place to provide protection from the elements and is patrolled by NFTA police.
Free shuttle service to and from the terminal is provided during regularly scheduled flights. The lot is opened after main lots, 1 and 2 become full. Lots 1 and 2 are on airport property, each with 250 spaces, and are accessed via the airport's main entrance.
All of the parking facilities are operated by Standard Parking, under an existing contract that is in place for services rendered at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport. Parking rates are $5 per day with a maximum weekly rate of $25, which is paid upon entry. The airport now as a total of 1,600 parking spaces.
The terminal is serviced by Allegiant Air (starting Dec. 15), Direct Air and Spirit Airlines. Flight schedules and destinations for all three carriers can be accessed via the NFIA's website at niagarafallsairport.com.
Buffalo, NY . . . The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that outbound Metro Rail stations from Allen-Medical Campus to Humboldt-Hospital will be closed between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 12, due to maintenance work being performed at the stations.
As a result, all boarding and departures in the tunnel between and including those stations will take place on the inbound side of the platform. Delays in service may occur during this time as a result of having only one track operational.
Metro will have a rail supervisor in the system to assist customers, there will be messages posted and public address announcements will be made at the stations to inform passengers of the temporary change in service.
Myrtle Beach, S.C - Direct Air, an air service with corporate headquarters located in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina announced today the reintroduction of seasonal air service from Niagara Falls to West Palm Beach, Florida, located on Florida's east coast in close proximity to Miami-Fort Lauderdale. Nonstop service to and from West Palm Beach will be offered three times per week beginning November 11 throughout the Winter 2011-2012 travel season.
To celebrate the reintroduction of service to West Palm Beach, Direct Air is inviting customers in the greater Niagara Falls area the opportunity to save on Direct Air's current, popular domestic routes, including flights to Lakeland, Florida, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and Punta Gorda, Florida. A special promotional fare of "$79 for 79 Hours*" for select flights will be extended to end on Tuesday, November 8th at 11:59 pm Eastern time. Reservations can be booked at www.visitdirectair.com or by calling Direct Air's Reservations Department at 1-877-432-3473.
Ed Warneck, Directing Partner states: "This time of year, people around Niagara Falls know it's time to think about heading for warmer weather fast! With the resumption of our West Palm Beach route around the corner, this is the perfect time to offer the right airfare at the right time for people who might only now be making plans to get out of the cold. We believe that our low fares and nonstop service will make West Palm Beach the destination of choice for winter getaways."
"Florida has always been an attractive Winter destination for folks living in the Niagara Falls area and in Canada, and our flight program here has always been well-received" Mr. Warneck continues. "Last winter, our booking levels to West Palm Beach favored our ability to maintain this route on a seasonal basis. Now, we're pleased to be able to resume offering nonstop service to West Palm Beach, and hope to continue to see increased demand for travel on this route."
"We are starting to see emerging demand for West Palm Beach as a cold-weather destination for travelers from Niagara Falls and other areas" states Directing Partner Judy Tull. "West Palm Beach has always been known as a destination for persons who want to leave their home in the snow country late in the year for a few months. Direct Air's continuing development of the West Palm Beach market has resulted in increasing returns for the company, and more travel options for the flying public".
Ms. Tull goes on to say that, "The partners of Direct Air all agree that Niagara Falls will continue to play a vital role in our program as a core gateway market. Since 2008, Direct Air has flown over 220,000 passengers from Niagara Falls. It is Direct Air's goal to grow the Niagara Falls market through increased frequency and adding new destinations as we have done in our other markets."
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that the inbound, aboveground Metro Rail stations will be closed from 7 a.m. until 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29 due to maintenance work being performed at the stations.
As a result of the work, all boardings and departures on the surface section will take place on the outbound side or eastside of Main Street. Unfortunately, due to the one-track service, there will be delays in service in both directions.
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director said, "I want to thank our customers for their patience and understanding during this interruption in service. We will work as efficiently as possible to limit any inconvenience to our riders."
Metro will have rail supervisors in the system to assist customers, there will be messages posted and public address announcements will be made at the stations to inform passengers of the temporary change in service.
Rail service is expected to return to a normal schedule after 4 p.m., in ample time to accommodate customers traveling to the First Niagara Center to attend the Buffalo Sabres game.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that construction work involving the two-tier roadway at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport is scheduled to start Monday, Sept. 26.
The $1.4 million Airport Improvement Project will involve both the arrivals and departures roadways. The work will consist of installing steel reinforcement to the upper deck roadway, in addition to repairing structural columns and concrete.
During construction the arrivals roadway (lower level) will be closed from 3 to 8 a.m., with lane restrictions at other times. There will be variable message signs in place to direct traffic into the proper lanes for both levels of roadway.
Passengers are advised to allow themselves extra time when using the airport. The recommended time to arrive for a departing flight is 90 minutes prior to departure.
The project will continue as long as the weather permits, with the remaining work to be completed in the spring.
Niagara FAlls, NY . . .
Allegiant (NASDAQ: ALGT), today announces low-cost, nonstop travel between Niagara Falls, N.Y., and the Tampa Bay, Fla., area via the St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport beginning Dec. 15, 2011. The company, known for its exceptional travel deals, is offering its customers fares between the two cities for as low as $79.99* one-way.
"We are pleased to bring an affordable and convenient way for the Niagara and southern Ontario areas to travel to Tampa Bay," Andrew C. Levy, Allegiant Travel Company President, said. "We are confident the Niagara Falls community will appreciate the value of flying nonstop to the Tampa Bay area and the great deals we offer on hotels and car rentals."
"We are extremely pleased that Allegiant will be serving the Niagara and southern Ontario regions from the Niagara Falls International Airport with service to Tampa/St. Petersburg, Fla.," Henry M. Sloma, NFTA acting chairman said. "I'm confident this new Florida destination will be very popular with our customers and they will also find favor with Allegiant's low fares and efficient service."
"We are very excited about the addition of non-stop service to the Niagara Falls International Airport. The Niagara Falls & Buffalo Airports are gateways for many Canadians to fly to the US and for Americans to visit the scenic Niagara Falls region. With this addition, Allegiant will now offer non-stop low-fare service to 23 destinations to/from our Airport." said Noah Lagos, A.A.E., Airport Director of the St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport.
The new flights will operate twice weekly between Niagara Falls International Airport (IAG) and St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport (PIE), with service Thursday and Sunday. Flights will depart Niagara Falls at 6:00 p.m. arriving in the Tampa Bay area at 8:35 p.m. Flights leaving the Tampa Bay area will depart at 2:30 p.m. arriving in Niagara Falls at 5:20 p.m. (all flight times are local). The carrier will utilize a full-size, 150-seat MD-80 jet aircraft on the route. This will serve as the first flight for Allegiant from the Niagara Falls International Airport.
With an average 361 days of sunshine each year, the St. Petersburg-Clearwater area is considered the most popular vacation destination on Florida's West Coast. The area was named among the top beaches in the United States and is one of a few destinations to have received the "Blue Wave Award" from the Clean Beaches Council. In addition to pristine beaches, visitors are within minutes of shopping, amazing golf courses and award-winning resort and dining experiences.
Allegiant is more than an airline, it is a full-service travel company that offers great value to its customers through its hotel and car rental packages. The company partners with 20 of the Tampa Bay area's most exciting hotel properties, including: Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay, Barefoot Beach Resort, Hilton Clearwater Beach Resort, Sheraton Sand Key Resort, Alden Beach Resort, Don CeSar Beach Resort and Sirata Beach Resort & Conference Center. Allegiant provides low-cost car rental service through its partnership with Alamo Rent a Car.
Allegiant's $79.99* one-way introductory fare is limited, must be purchased by Oct. 20, 2011, and is valid for travel between Dec. 15, 2011, and Feb. 14, 2012. Introductory fares are not available on all flights.
Reservations can be made on the airline's website at www.allegiant.com or by calling the company's travel experts at 702-505-8888. Allegiant guarantees the lowest price on air and hotel vacation packages through the company's Low-Price Pledge. If the customer finds an air and hotel package for less, Allegiant will credit the difference for use on a future booking. Allegiant is also rewarding customers who book an air and hotel package through the company with an instant $20 savings on roundtrip airfare, making it even more affordable to book an air and hotel package.
About the $79.99* one-way fare: Seats are limited. Fares are one-way and not available on all flights. Must be purchased by Oct. 10, 2011, for travel by Feb. 14, 2012. Offer not available Dec. 24, 2011--Jan. 4, 2012. Prices do not include PFC, segment tax or Sept. 11th security fee of up to $10.70 per segment. A segment is one take-off and one landing. A fee of $14.99 per segment, will apply when purchased through Allegiant call centers. For ticket counter hours of operation, please visit www.allegiant.com. When purchased at the time of booking, a checked bag fee of up to $19.99 per bag will apply per person, per segment. If purchased at flight check-in, a fee of $35 per checked bag, per person, per segment will apply for the first two bags checked. Additional higher fees will apply for three or more checked bags. Fare rules, routes and schedules are subject to change without notice. Restrictions apply. $20 savings based on a two-night, air+hotel purchase; valid at select Allegiant hotels.
Allegiant, travel is our deal. Las Vegas-based Allegiant Travel Company (NASDAQ: ALGT), is focused on linking travelers in small cities to world-class leisure destinations such as Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix-Mesa, Orlando, Fla., and Tampa/St. Petersburg, Fla. Through its subsidiary, Allegiant Air, the company operates a low-cost, high-efficiency, all-jet passenger airline offering air travel both on a stand-alone basis and bundled with hotel rooms, rental cars and other travel-related services. In 2010, Allegiant was ranked number one for low-cost carriers in Aviation Week's Top Performing Airline study and ranked 25 on FORTUNE magazine's Fastest-Growing Companies list. Receive breaking news from Allegiant by visiting Allegiant's Facebook Fan Page at www.facebook.com/Allegiant or follow Allegiant on Twitter at twitter.com/allegiantair.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced they have a new comprehensive agreement with Erie Community College to participate in Metro's College University Unlimited Access Pass program.
ECC becomes the fifth local college to have a Metro unlimited access pass program for all of their undergraduate students. The program provides all of ECC's approximately 15,000 undergraduate students with unlimited access to Metro Bus, Rail and Paratransit services seven days a week.
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director said, "We are very excited about having all ECC students participate in Metro's Unlimited Ride program. They will now be able to experience the many advantages of using Metro to travel not only to classes, but at any time they want, to all of the places Metro travels in Erie and Niagara counties."
" I would like to thank the NFTA and their directors for providing all ECC students the opportunity to take advantage of unlimited use of all Metro bus and rail services. This service will give easy access to all three ECC campuses from anywhere in Erie County. A special thank you to NFTA Executive Director Minkel for working with ECC to provide this convenience to our students" said Jack Quinn, President of Erie Community College.
The new one-year expanded agreement includes all undergraduate students taking classes at ECC's three campuses starting Sept.1 through May 31, 2012. The previous agreements, which included primarily City campus students, started in 2007.
Metro will provide ECC with student photo identification cards encoded with a magnetic strip that when swiped through the bus fare box or shown to a Metro Rail ticket inspector will provide convenient, unlimited access. The new agreement calls for each student to pay $30 per semester.
As part of the agreement Metro will offer additional MetroLink Route 211 fixed route open door service, which will operate weekdays between the City campus and both North and South campuses from approximately 7 a.m. to 5:20 p.m. The service will also run Saturdays from City campus to South campus between 10 a.m. and 4:50 p.m., providing access to all shopping areas near the McKinley Mall.
ECC has agreed to provide advertising space for Metro to use that will include a outdoor billboard on Ellicott Street across from the college, campus digital signage, website advertising and inclusion in the their promotional materials.
"We laud ECC for adding the additional two campuses to the program so that the entire undergraduate body will now have unlimited access to the whole Metro system to travel throughout the region," Minkel added.
The Metro Bus and Rail system includes 324 buses and 27 rail cars, generating service for approximately 105,000 people a day in Erie and Niagara counties.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority commemorated the 30th Anniversary of the Aircraft Rescue Firefighting unit at the Buffalo Niagara International Airport today during a recognition program for active and retired firefighters at the BNIA firehouse. The BNIA ARFF unit got its start in March 1981, when it was created as the Public Safety department by the NFTA board of commissioners to handle both safety and security functions at the then Greater Buffalo International Airport.
In April 1981, the NFTA's Public Safety unit assumed control of the airport's fire department duties from the Buffalo Fire department. The unit assumed control of the safety aspect by staffing four security checkpoints in the east and west terminals with 42 public safety officers and became the fire department for the Greater Buffalo International Airport.
Henry M. Sloma, NFTA acting chairman said, "It has been a distinguished 30 years for the men and women of the department. They have grown from a small unit assigned to public safety, into a multi-functional department capable of responding not only to aviation related emergencies, but to mutual aid calls for assistance combating major off-airport fires in the region."
From its humble beginnings in 1981, the unit has progressed into an elite firefighting department capable of responding to all types of aviation related emergences, in addition to medical emergencies in the terminal such as cardiac arrests. In 2008, members of the department saved two passengers from cardiac arrest in two separate occasions just two months apart.
When Continental Express flight #3407 crashed in Clarence Center, NY in February 2009, the department was one of the first units on the scene with resources, including truck F4 and its fire suppressant foam dispensing capabilities. Members of the department spent the next five days helping secure the crash site.
In addition, in June the department responded to a multiple alarm fire in Depew, NY at the Twin Village Recycling facility, again with truck F4 dispensing fire suppressant foam to quell the hot fire.
Most recently, the City of Buffalo Fire department called upon the BNIA ARFF unit this past July for assistance in fighting a stubborn chemical warehouse fire at Niagara Lubricant. Once again, fire truck F4 was dispatched and assisted in bringing the fire under control by dispensing 400 gallons of fire suppressant foam on the structure.
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director said, "I am extremely proud of the quality and professionalism each man and woman brings to the department. They place their lives at risk each time they respond to a call, which they do without hesitation. This takes dedication, commitment and professionalism of the highest level. I am delighted at what they have accomplished and look forward to what they will achieve over the next 30 years."
The ARFF department now has a complement of 41 firefighters. The unit trains each day in various aspects of firefighting and conducts periodic tabletop exercises and drills at the airfield with area first responders to ensure that when they do work together in the field they are all using the same techniques and methods to maximize their collective efforts.
Chris Putney, Chief of the ARFF unit and a 30-year veteran said, "I am extremely proud of the exemplary work and effort the men and women of the department put forth each and every day to keep the airport safe. Doing so takes dedication, commitment and professionalism of the highest level. I am proud of what we have accomplished as a group and look forward to the challenges that lie ahead."
Rev. Joe Bayne, OFM Conv., Chief Chaplin, Erie County Emergency Services offered a blessing for the firefighters continued safety of the men and women of the department. In addition, a 30th Anniversary commemorative pin was presented to each active and retired member of the department whom were present.
Further, the program featured a tour of the firehouse and a field demonstration of the firefighting capabilities of fire truck F4 affectionately known as the "beast" of the department.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced today Metro Rail will increase rider capacity for A Taste of Buffalo, Saturday and Sunday, July 9 and 10, to accommodate riders traveling downtown to enjoy the tasty event.
Extra trains will be added to the regular service on both days so that more passengers will be able to travel at one time. Trains will stop at all stations.
Metro schedules and route maps can be found at nfta.com/metro.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that Ms.Vicky-Marie J. Brunette has been named the NFTA's Deputy General Counsel. Brunette, 44, started with the authority in 1994.
In making the announcement, NFTA General Counsel David J. State said, "In addition to handling her current litigation caseload, Brunette will perform General Counsel duties in my absence and play a significant role in implementing compliance initiatives being developed by the authority. This restructuring of the General Counsel's office will improve our ability to serve the authority and the public and I congratulate Vicky on her appointment."
Brunette is a graduate of St. John Fisher College, Rochester, NY and the Cleveland- Marshal College of Law, Cleveland, OH. She is a resident of North Buffalo, NY.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority will once again offer the Summer Youth Pass to youth 17 yrs. and under. With the SYP passengers can ride as much as they'd like June 24 through Sept. 8, on any Metro bus or Metro Rail.
The Summer Youth Pass is $52.50 and available at participating Tops, Wilson Farms, Budwey's, Parkside Pharmacy and Dash's Markets. The Summer Youth Pass also comes with discounts to several area restaurants, shops, and attractions. Pass holders just have to show their pass at participating merchants to receive their discount. The savings are so good the pass almost pays for itself. Passes will be on sale starting June 13.
For more details, in addition to Metro maps and schedules, visit at nfta.com.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced that Metro will once again provide complementary trolley service for guests staying at participating Niagara Falls motels and hotels beginning Friday, May 13. The 55T Niagara Falls Blvd./Pine Avenue trolley bus will travel between and downtown Niagara Falls, serving Niagara Falls Boulevard and Pine Avenue.
Service will operate weekends May 13 - 31 and Nov. 24 -Dec. 31, and seven days a week from June 1 - Oct. 31. The service will operate from 9 a.m. until midnight and on all holidays during these service periods.
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director, said, "We have two new trolley buses in our fleet this year. They are larger, so we'll be able to better serve our passengers at peak times throughout the year."
Patrons will receive their trolley day passes that are affixed with a sequential number, upon request at participating hotels and motels. The pass, supported by the local bed tax, allows pass holders free access to the trolley service, and the entire Metro Bus and Rail system in Niagara and Erie counties, on the date the trolley pass is punched by the Metro operator.
Individuals without a trolley day pass may ride the service by paying Metro's regular adult fare of $1.75, 75 cents for children (5-11 yrs.), seniors (65 yrs. and over), disabled and Medicare clients with valid I.D. All other Metro passes are also valid. Children four and under ride free, limit three children per fare paying adult.
Special Route 55T trolley stop signs along the route indicate where riders can board a trolley. In downtown Niagara Falls, the 55T trolley stops are located at The Aquarium of Niagara, Rainbow Blvd., Michael O'Laughlin Drive, Rainbow Blvd., Main Street and near the Seneca Niagara Casino at Third Street and Old Falls Street.
In addition, stops are located at the City Market on Pine Avenue and 17th Street, the Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls, The Summit, several motels along Niagara Falls Boulevard and the Como Restaurant in Little Italy on Pine Avenue and 22nd Street.
All Metro route maps and schedules can be found online at nfta.com/metro, including trolley maps and schedules.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced today that it has streamlined its Instant Update online messaging program to make it easier for individuals to receive e-mails and text messages regarding NFTA information.
People can sign up at the NFTA's website nfta.com to subscribe to receive status changes for categories such as Metro Bus and Rail service, Metro Rider Alerts for any and all routes, Buffalo and Niagara Falls International Airport updates, Paratransit notices, employment postings and slip holder information from the NFTA Boat Harbor.
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director said, "Utilizing today's cutting-edge technology, we are able to provide our customers with the most current information possible. With Instant Updates, our customers have the ability to receive information important to them in a matter of minutes no matter where they are."
Users of the system have the ability to select categories of interest and designate if they want an e-mail, text message or both, and at what e-mail address and cell phone number they want to receive their updates. There is no cost to subscribe to the program, but wireless providers may charge for each text message a user receives.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced today that they have selected Thomas R. George to be the Authority's new Director of Surface Transportation. Henry M. Sloma, NFTA acting chairman said, "We are pleased to have an individual such as Tom join our team. He possesses strong leadership qualities, knowledge of Metro's operations and the local transportation landscape and is eager to lead Metro at this very important time in its history."
George, 49, was selected after a nationwide search to fill the position that has been vacant since the retirement of Walter D. Zmuda in November 2010. For the last eight years George has been the Executive Director of the Niagara International Transportation Technology Coalition.
In his new position George will be responsible for directing the overall Surface Transportation Business Center operation for Metro Bus and Rail and Paratransit services to ensure optimal mobility for the Buffalo Niagara region, in addition to equipment and vehicle maintenance, procurement, financial planning and administration.
As NITTEC's first executive director of the only Canadian - U.S. coalition of its kind, he brought together 14 state, provincial and local transportation agencies in concert with U.S. and Canadian federal authorities to address transportation and mobility opportunities throughout the region and across the international border.
During his tenure at the bi-national agency he oversaw the development of a Regional Concept of Transportation Operations for the Buffalo Niagara region. The multi mode regional operations plan was developed to establish collaboration between all regional transportation agencies.
In addition, he worked with all traffic operations activities throughout the state of New York and Ontario to establish and maintain a consistent approach to traffic management, response protocols, emergency preparedness and traveler information, including the development of integrated systems for data sharing.
He is a graduate of Michigan Technological University where he earned a Bachelors of Science Civil Engineering degree and is a Licensed Professional Engineer.
George will start his new position May 11 at a salary of $125,000. He resides in Akron, NY with his wife and two children.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority announced the Buffalo Niagara International Airport received a Balchen/Post Award for Outstanding Achievement at the recent 45th Annual International Aviation Snow Symposium.
The Northeast Chapter of the American Association of Airport Executives recognized the BNIA's "snow removal team" with a First Place Award in the medium commercial airport category. All categories of airports - Commercial, General Aviation and Military compete for the awards. This is the 35th consecutive year that awards have been presented and the sixth time the BNIA has been so honored, with the last recognition being for the 2007-08 winter.
Kimberley A. Minkel, NFTA executive director, said, "I am extremely proud of our team of snow removal professionals based on the reliable and consistent job they do in keeping our runways safe and open to accommodate aviation during winter storms."
Nominations for consideration come from airlines, pilots, general aviation officials, hotel owners, corporate pilots and ground transportation operators. An independent selection committee screens the recommendations and makes the selections in various categories based on airport size, which is determined by the number of flights in and out of the airport during the year. In making their selections, the committee considered not only the crew's ability to keep the airport runways free of ice and snow, but also equipment readiness, personnel training, and overall safety awareness.
In spite of 111 inches of snow falling at the BNIA this past winter, runways at the BNIA were never closed. "This speaks volumes about the dedication and ability of our airfield personnel who work around the clock, including being away from their families on holidays and missing family functions while working to maintain our runways," Minkel added.
Buffalo, NY . . .
The Easter Bunny is making an early trip to downtown Buffalo Thursday, April 21. Riding a specially decorated Metro Rail car, the Bunny will be meeting and greeting his fans, posing for photos and, hopefully, welcoming spring. The train will run between 10:48 a.m. and 5:13 p.m. And remember, Metro Rail is free above ground. The schedule is available here.