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Sun, Jun 27, 2004

DFW Debuts New SkyLink People Mover

World's largest airport train makes first test run; eight months of testing begins

Gliding down a test track on a flawless run, the SkyLink Automated People Mover System made its public debut at DFW International Airport. The Airport begins a rigorous eight-month testing of SkyLink this summer, and the world's largest airport train begins serving DFW's existing four terminals in early 2005. Later next year, SkyLink will take passengers to the new International Terminal D.

"This is a day we've been thinking about and dreaming about for some time: the first time our public sees the new SkyLink train moving around DFW," said Jeff Fegan, DFW CEO. "It will completely change traveling around DFW Airport. It will change how our passengers use our terminals. It will even change the view of DFW Airport. Our passengers will love it."

During the eight month testing period, the public will see the flashy blue and white trains sporting DFW's signature logo maneuvering the 50-foot high guideways at speeds of up to 40 miles an hour.  The skylines of Dallas and Fort Worth are visible from SkyLink's windows.

Once operational, SkyLink will be capable of transporting 5,000 passengers per hour per direction with a nine-minute travel time between farthest distances and an average ride time of five minutes. In the future the system will transport up to 8,500 passengers per hour per direction.

The testing phase is an important element in bringing the SkyLink system online.   DFW is receiving two train cars per week from Bombardier Transportation System's Pittsburgh facility.  Currently 28 cars are stored in SkyLink's Maintenance Storage Facility and the fleet will grow to 64 cars.

"Over the next eight months, the SkyLink trains will maneuver around the guideway, moving from terminal station to terminal station," said Clay Paslay, executive vice president of Airport Development. "We'll be testing the operation of each train, including doors and sound systems. "This is an exciting time for all of us on the SkyLink team, and we can't wait for the public at large to take their first rides next year."

Until SkyLink opens, DFW Airport passengers will be able to continue using the existing systems to connect to other terminals, including DFW's Terminal Link van service and American Airlines' TrAAin.

FMI: www.dfwairport.com/skylink

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