Baker, Ahles & Kaskovich

Decision on American headquarters coming soon, Fort Worth mayor says

American crews took the Fort Worth-based carrier’s first Dreamliner up for a test flight at Boeing’s facility in Washington on Thursday.
American crews took the Fort Worth-based carrier’s first Dreamliner up for a test flight at Boeing’s facility in Washington on Thursday. Courtesy of American Airlines

Could we be a little closer to finding out about the future of American Airlines’ headquarters in Fort Worth?

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price said the city is meeting with the airline regularly and characterized the meetings as “still in the discussion phases.”

“We are talking to them every week about their headquarters,” Price said after the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport board meeting this month. “I would expect that you’d have a decision in the next ... that’s hard to say ... but relatively soon.”

In November, American Chief Executive Doug Parker confirmed that the airline is reviewing its space needs and considering a number of options for its headquarters, including sites outside Fort Worth. The company may build a new headquarters facility in Fort Worth, move to another North Texas city or staying in its existing space, he said.

The airline, which has 25,000 employees locally, has two headquarters buildings on Amon Carter Boulevard, just south of DFW Airport, that house executive offices and thousands of employees. One was built in 1988, the other in 1990.

American has added 1,500 employees in North Texas since it completed its merger with US Airways and may be running out of space at the head office.

Last summer, American broke ground on a 149,000-square-foot Integrated Operations Center on the west side of Texas 360 about a mile from the headquarters building, with the help of a 15-year, $6.5 million tax incentive from the city. There’s more land near that site that could make a nice Fort Worth site for a new HQ.

Testing the Dreamliner

American Airlines took its first Boeing 787 Dreamliner out for a little test flight Thursday evening. The company sent flight attendants, a test pilot and engineers to Boeing’s manufacturing facility near Seattle to check out the new aircraft.

“This is something that will be written into our company’s history. It’s certainly a milestone and I’m very proud to be part of it. When I’m 70, I’ll be telling my grandchildren about this,” American test pilot David Hensley said in an internal newsletter Thursday.

The company also posted a short video of the 787’s takeoff on its Facebook page.

American should take delivery of its first Dreamliner in a few weeks and expects to start using the aircraft on domestic flights in the spring. It will then place the 787 on international routes this summer.

Petroleum Club getting digital upgrades

The Petroleum Club, one of the city’s oldest private clubs and perched atop the 777 Main office tower in downtown Fort Worth, is looking to revamp its brand and hired Fort Worth’s Balcom Agency to do the work.

The agency said it will “contemporize” communication materials for the club. That includes creating interactive projects and social media platforms. Balcom has already designed a new logo.

The Petroleum Club was established in 1953 and is home to the famous Golden Goddess statue, a Fort Worth icon that once stood in the historic Westbrook Hotel lobby and was said to bring good luck to oil men. In recent years, the club consolidated to one floor from two in 777 Main. It also added an outdoor balcony and remodeled its space.

Balcom’s Fort Worth clients include Justin Boots, Cash America, the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth and TCU’s Neeley School of Business.