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Travel Woes: How American Airports Lost Their Glamour

The dissolution of the industry was reflected in airports, where architectural innovation was quickly pushed aside to make room for quick, easy fixes.


American Airlines’ filing for bankruptcy protection last week provoked surprisingly little reaction from the media or regular travelers. Perhaps we've grown immune to the whims of the rapidly changing airline industry, where the past three decades have seen the merging and dissolution of countless carriers.

Yet it wasn’t so long ago that air travel was synonymous with Americans’ visions of the future, when purchasing a boarding pass meant participating in the ever-expanding dreams of post-war America. Somewhere along the way, the optimistic glow surrounding air travel faded away, leaving a beleaguered industry that causes stress and frustration, not awe, for American travelers. And the dissolution of the industry was reflected in airports, where architectural innovation was quickly pushed aside to make room for quick, easy fixes.

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Airline Pilots Ditch Paper for iPads and Save Millions in Fuel

Pilots have to carry up to 35 pounds of paper on every flight. Leaving it behind makes a ton of sense.

At least two airlines are switching from paper to iPads in the cockpit, Marketwatch reports.

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GOOD Design Daily: An Airport Both TSA and Travelers Can Love

SFO's new T2 is designed by San Francisco-based Gensler to calm travelers during what has become a high-stress, high-security period.

With the first wave of holiday travel behind us, and everyone up in arms about the TSA's mini-massage parlors, what better time to reveal details about a smart, sustainable new terminal for San Francisco's International Airport? SFO's T2, which will serve as a hub for American Airlines and Virgin Airlines, is designed by San Francisco-based Gensler to calm travelers during these now high-stress, high-security periods.

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