The ATL SkyTrain, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta Airport’s new elevated people mover connecting the terminal to a remote car rental facility since Dec. 8, runs like a “synchronized watch,” according to Gino M. Antoniello, vice president, Sumitomo Corp. of America.
Mr. Antoniello was one of 300 officials from the city, the state and the airport attending the opening ceremony for the rental car facility and the launch of the people mover connecting the facility to the airport.
Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin, Aviation General Manager Ben DeCosta, College Park Mayor Jack Longino and Kevin Langston, deputy commissioner of the Georgia Department of Economic Development, all spoke at the ribbon cutting ceremony.
The people mover represents state-of-the-art technology developed by Sumitomo with its partner on the project, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries North America Inc., over a four-year period. The two companies also have a contract for the next five years to operate the system.
“This is the most reliable and safest equipment…” Mr. Antoniello said. “It is truly state of the art.”
He cited the coordination of the vehicles’ power distribution, communications system and controls, including the operation of the station doors, as the exclusive product of Sumitomo and Mitsubishi.
The project, which is part of the 10-year $6 billion plus capital improvement program undertaken by the airport, also is to reduce congestion and air pollution, he said.
“We’re going green,” he added of the facility, which, he said, will provide a catalyst for further economic growth in the region.
The rental car facility includes 8,700 parking places on two four-story decks in addition to 1,200 more ground-level parking spaces. It consolidates 12 rental car agencies in a 137,00-square-foot customer service center.
The trip between the terminal and the rental car center takes about five minutes with a stop at the Georgia International Convention Center, providing direct access to that currently underutilized facility for conventions and events.
More than 2 million passengers complete rental car transactions each year at the airport.