Columbus International Airport
|Owner/Operator||Columbus Regional Airport Authority|
|Location||4600 International Gateway Columbus, Ohio, U.S.|
|Elevation AMSL||815 ft / 248 m|
|Public transit access||7, AirConnect|
FAA airport diagram
John Glenn Columbus International Airport (IATA: CMH, ICAO: KCMH, FAA LID: CMH) is an international airport located 6 miles (9.7 km) east of downtown Columbus, Ohio. Formerly known as Port Columbus International Airport, it is managed by the Columbus Regional Airport Authority, which also oversees operations at Rickenbacker International Airport and Bolton Field. The airport code 'CMH' stands for "Columbus Municipal Hangar," the original name for the airport.
John Glenn Columbus International Airport is primarily a passenger airport. It provides 148 non-stop flights to 31 airports via 9 airlines daily.
On May 25, 2016, the Ohio General Assembly passed a bill to rename the airport from Port Columbus International Airport to its current name, in honor of astronaut and four-term U.S. senator John Glenn. The name change was unanimously approved by the airport's nine-member board on May 24, 2016. Ohio Governor John Kasich signed the bill into law on June 14, 2016 with the name change becoming official 90 days later. On June 28, 2016, a celebration of the renaming was held and new signage bearing the airport's new name was unveiled.
The airport opened July 8, 1929, on a site selected by Charles Lindbergh, as the eastern air terminus of the Transcontinental Air Transport air-rail New York to Los Angeles transcontinental route. Passengers traveled overnight on the Pennsylvania Railroad's Airway Limited from New York to Columbus; by air from Columbus to Waynoka, Oklahoma; by rail again on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe from Waynoka to Clovis, New Mexico; and by air from Clovis to Los Angeles. The original terminal building and hangars remain; the hangars are still in use, but the old terminal sits derelict.
During World War II, most of the facility was taken over by the U.S. Navy, which established Naval Air Station Columbus in 1942. NAS Columbus was closed and the facility relinquished back to civilian authorities in 1946. Also, during the war, the government established a government-owned aviation factory on the grounds of the airport known as Air Force Factory 85, eventually operated by North American Aviation. The plant produced the F-100 Super Saber, RA-5 Vigilante, T-2 Buckeye, T-28 Trojan, OV-10 Bronco and T-39 Sabreliner.
The diagram on the February 1951 Coast & Geodetic Survey instrument-approach chart shows runways 006/186 3550 ft long, 052/232 4400 ft, 096/276 4500 ft, and 127/307 5030 ft.
A new $12 million terminal building opened on September 21, 1958. Jet airline flights (American 707s) started in April 1964.
The first major airline to fly into Columbus was TWA, and it kept a presence at Columbus over 70 years during the era of airline regulation. TWA offered a club for exclusive passengers up until 2000 when America West took over a gate held by TWA and the club itself due to financial problems.
The airport was the home base of short-lived Skybus Airlines, which began operations from Columbus on May 22, 2007. The airline touted themselves as the cheapest airline in the United States, offering a minimum of ten seats for $10 each on every flight. Skybus ceased operations April 4, 2008.
A $70 million renovation of airport facilities, designed by Brubaker, Brandt Inc., was initiated in 1979 for the airport's 50th anniversary and completed in 1981. This upgraded the airport's capacity to 250 flights per day by adding what is known today as Concourse B and added fully enclosed jetways at every gate. Ten years later in 1989, a second, $15.5 million, seven-gate south concourse (now Concourse A) was dedicated. The concourse was used exclusively by US Airways at the time, and later housed hubs for both America West Airlines until 2003, and Skybus Airlines until they shut it down in 2008 due to their bankruptcy. A north concourse was completed in 1996, which is now Concourse C, and was expanded in 2002.
Between 1998 and 2000, numerous airport expansion and renovation projects were completed, including a $25 million terminal renovation in 1998 that included additional retail shops, new flight information displays, enhanced lighting, upgraded flooring, and a new food court. Also, new hangars and office spaces were completed for NetJets in 1999, as well as a $92 million parking garage including an underground terminal entrance, new rental car facilities, dedicated ground transportation area, improved eight-lane terminal access on two levels, and a new atrium and entrances in 2000, which were designed by URS Corporation.
On April 25, 2004, a new 195-foot (59 m) control tower directed its first aircraft. This began several major facility enhancements to be constructed through 2025. On October 21, 2010, a new arrivals/departures board replaced the old one in the main entrance area
Columbus began its Terminal Modernization Program in late 2012, which included new terrazzo flooring throughout the airport, new ceilings, new restrooms, more TSA security lanes, and new LED lighting. Construction started on Concourse A in late 2012 and was completed throughout the terminal in early 2016.
In 2013, the airport completed a $140 million runway improvement that moved the south runway farther from the north runway. This created a buffer distance that enables simultaneous takeoffs and landings on the north and south runways, increasing air traffic volume. Columbus mayor Michael B. Coleman commented, "As the city grows, the airport needs to grow with it."
In 2019, construction began on a new car rental facility at the airport with an estimated budget of $140 million. This will move the existing car rental facility out of the parking garage, opening up more spaces for travelers. The new garage is expected to open in late 2021, and will utilize electric busses to transport passengers.
Many airlines introduced new routes in the late 2010s, with the addition of Alaska Airlines with one daily flight to Seattle. Occasionally, larger aircraft that the airport is not used to receiving on a regular basis, such as the Boeing 767 and 777, are chartered through John Glenn and serviced by Lane Aviation.
As of the end of 2020, many new, current, and to-be-expanded routes have been cancelled or reduced due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Since the initial lockdowns in March, Air Canada temporarily suspended service to Columbus, while airlines such as United, American, and Delta used smaller aircraft for some of their mainline routes. Many of these routes are seeing an increase of service mid-2021 as restrictions lift and demand for air travel grows. Startup Breeze Airways also selected Columbus as one of its launch destinations in July with five routes.
John Glenn Columbus International Airport has one terminal with concourses and a total of 34 gates. Non-precleared international flights are processed in Concourse C, which contains the airports customs facility.
The airport is accessible directly by taking exit number nine on Interstate 670 to International Gateway. Alternatively, drivers can also get to the airport from the east via Hamilton Road, just south of Interstate 270, and enter at Sawyer Road or from the west via Stelzer Road.
In addition to housing the rental car facilities, a six-story parking garage (which is attached to the terminal) provides long-term and short-term parking. Lower cost satellite parking options, with continuous free shuttle service, can be found in the Blue, Red and Green parking lots along International Gateway. The Blue lot is the closest to the terminal and also offers some covered parking. The cost of parking a car in the blue lot is $9 per 24 hours. The Red Lot costs $7 per 24 hours and the green lost costs $5 per 24 hours to park. The Green lot is the furthest away from the terminal. Additionally, there is a free cell phone lot accessed from the outbound side of International Gateway.
The Columbus Metropolitan Area's bus service, the Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA), has two bus services between the airport and downtown Columbus. AirConnect, a service that began in 2016, stops at the arrival and departure levels every 30 minutes. COTA's 7 Mt. Vernon route is operated from downtown, with every other bus serving either the airport or Easton Transit Center.
Inbound taxi services operate through numerous taxi businesses in the Columbus area. A number of taxi services provide outbound transportation in the taxi lane.
Regional carrier Republic Airways operates a large crew and maintenance base at the airport.
The airport has its own police and fire departments (ARFF-C).
|American Airlines|| Charlotte, Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami (begins November 2, 2021), Phoenix-Sky Harbor|
Seasonal: Cancún, Chicago-O'Hare, New York-LaGuardia, Philadelphia
|American Eagle||Boston, Charlotte, Chicago-O'Hare, Miami, New York-JFK, New York-LaGuardia, Philadelphia, Washington-National|||
|Breeze Airways||Charleston (SC), Hartford, New Orleans, Norfolk, Tampa|||
|Delta Air Lines||Atlanta, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Salt Lake City (resumes June 6, 2022)|||
|Delta Connection||Boston, Detroit, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York-JFK, New York-LaGuardia|||
|Frontier Airlines|| Denver, Orlando, Tampa (begins December 17, 2021)|
Seasonal: Cancún (begins January 21, 2022)
| Atlanta, Austin (begins November 23, 2021), Baltimore, Chicago-Midway, Dallas-Love, Denver, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Houston-Hobby, Las Vegas, Nashville, Orlando, Phoenix-Sky Harbor, St. Louis, Tampa, Washington-National|
Seasonal: Cancún, Miami, Myrtle Beach, Panama City (FL), Sarasota
|Spirit Airlines|| Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orlando, Pensacola|
Seasonal: Fort Myers, Myrtle Beach, New Orleans, Tampa
|United Airlines||Chicago-O'Hare, Denver, Houston-Intercontinental, San Francisco (resumes January 4, 2022), Washington-Dulles|||
|United Express|| Chicago-O'Hare, Denver, Houston-Intercontinental, Newark, Washington-Dulles|
Seasonal: Charleston (SC), Fort Myers, Hilton Head, Portland (ME)
|1||Atlanta, Georgia||228,000||Delta, Southwest|
|3||Orlando, Florida||144,000||Frontier, Southwest, Spirit|
|3||Charlotte, North Carolina||132,000||American|
|4||Denver, Colorado||119,000||Frontier, Southwest, United|
|5||Chicago-O'Hare, Illinois||113,000||American, United|
|6||Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas||106,000||American|
|7||Fort Myers, Florida||93,000||Southwest, Spirit, United|
|8||Fort Lauderdale, Florida||80,000||Southwest, Spirit|
|10||Las Vegas, Nevada||72,000||Southwest, Spirit|
|3||Delta Air Lines||589,301||18.10%|
|8||Air Canada Express||9,500||0.29%|