Columbia Metropolitan Airport
Columbia Metropolitan Airport is located to the southwest of South Carolina’s capital city. Though it is a regional airport, it offers a fair number of connections to cities in the eastern part of the United States. Because it is located just a few miles outside of Columbia itself, the airport can be easily accessed by those tourists who are traveling near the central part of the city. As is the case with most regional hubs, the airport features two different runways, each of which is more than 8,000 feet in length. The runways are long enough for most modern jets. All air operations are overseen by the air traffic control tower.
History of Columbia Metropolitan Airport
The airport originally came into being as Lexington County Airport at the beginning of the 1940s. The outbreak of World War II forced the United States government to look for airfields that would allow them to train pilots for eventual use in both theaters of the war. In fact, the airfield was used as a starting point for many of the top-secret raids on Japan. After the war ended, the airport returned to civilian use and began to slowly grow in size and in stature. As the city of Columbia became more populated as well, the airport eventually found itself a key stop-over point for flights between the Northeast and the Deep South.
The current main terminal was built in the late 1960s and renovated in the late 1990s. In an interesting design feature, there are a number of ponds that are located alongside the terminal. Though the primary purpose of the ponds is for elegant decoration, the water can also be used by emergency personnel to put out a fire that has unceremoniously begun on the tarmac or the runway. In fact, when it comes to emergency services, the airport is completely self-sufficient. It contains its own fire department, police unit, and post office. With recent renovations that have expanded the length of the terminal, the airport is now one of the first-rate structures in the southern United States.
The recent renovations have added a number of other nice amenities to the airport. A large parking garage has been built, which generally means that travelers can leave their cars safely parked inside the structure for days or even weeks at a time. Because inclement weather often rolls across South Carolina, travelers can rest assured that their vehicles will remain perfectly secure while they are gone. Other improvements have been made to the various roads and ramps that serve the airport. Because there are now new connections with the surrounding interstates, men and women can quickly get to the parking garage without navigating a network of difficult secondary roads.
The Columbia Metropolitan Airport also makes use of several automated systems. Both of the moving sidewalks within the airport are 200 feet long. Travelers can use these devices to take some of the stress off their weary feet, especially when they are carrying heavy pieces of luggage to the gate. Airport mini-cars are also available for disabled individuals with limited mobility.
The airport serves a wide swath of South Carolina. State residents who live near the capital will nearly always want to use the airport to travel to other destinations around the country or indeed the world. Because the main terminal features state-of-the-art amenities, men and women will be able to arrive at their gates in style. The entire facility is steeped in American history, and travelers can gaze loftily upon the runways that were first built to train World War II pilots who would shortly be flying missions to Germany and Japan.