Private jet passengers have a new first impression of Fort Worth.
On Tuesday, the city opened a new 85,000 square-foot administration building at Meacham Airport that includes new passenger lounges and conference rooms. The makeover of the building was funded with $20 million from the city and an undisclosed investment by American Aero FTW, a fixed-base operator that will lease 8,000 square-feet for its employees in the new building.
“A vibrant airport makes for a vibrant city,” said Robert Bass, owner of American Aero, at the ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday. “As primary tenant in this new facility, we’ve worked with the city to create a five-star experience.”
The airport, which opened in 1925, primarily serves private plane owners, passengers who fly on private aircraft and commercial aerospace businesses. In 2016, the airport had over 140,000 takeoffs and landings and recorded over 5 million gallons of fuel flowage with both metrics increasing over the past five years.
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“You need a world class center that is welcoming and open,” said Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price. “It makes Meacham a multipurpose airport, more than just for landings and taking off.”
Price said it made sense to keep the existing metal frame and foundation and renovate the building instead of tearing down the 1968 facility and constructing a brand new building. By keeping parts of the old building and installing energy efficient features such as View Dynamic Glass, which adjusts its tints depending on the sunlight, the new administration building is applying for LEED certification.
The new building houses the city’s aviation department along with divisions of the planning and development and code enforcement.