HOUSTON -- Mayor Lee P. Brown was among the celebrants at a July 18 ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new $135 million consolidated rental car facility at George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH). The facility is scheduled to open to the public Aug. 7.
The facility will centralize the operations of nine on-airport rental operators. A common bus system, using low-emission clean diesel vehicles, will replace the individual operator shuttles. According to the airport, the project will reduce the number of rental shuttle buses from 126 to 23 during peak periods.
The two-level facility sits on a 140-acre site on the east side of John F. Kennedy Blvd. An additional 60 acres are available for future expansion.
"IAH joins the first wave of airports that have decided to tackle the challenges of traffic congestion and reducing emissions," Mayor Brown said. "This facility is also user-friendly and offers superior customer service to Houston's visitors."
The project includes a 30,000-square-foot four-bay bus maintenance facility, along with a 3,500-square-foot tilt wall bus wash and fueling station with a 20,000-gallon underground fuel storage tank.
The Morganti Group Inc. and Champagne-Webber Inc. were the general contractors for the consolidated facility.
Special facility bonds will finance the project over a 25-year term. A $3-per-day customer facility charge will cover the debt service. The customer facility charge is the sole guarantee of the debt service payments.
The consolidated rental car facility is part of the airport's $2.9 billion expansion and renovation plan scheduled for completion by 2005.