Airport seeks public input on concession program

The Juneau International Airport

The airport is hoping to start design work for a substantial remodel soon, but first wants to hear what Juneau residents want for concessions. (Photo by Heather Bryant/KTOO)

The Juneau Airport is conducting an online survey to find out what food, beverage, and retail services Juneau residents want. Airport architect Catherine Fritz says this is a crucial step before the airport moves forward with designing an upcoming remodel.

“We just want to encourage people to go online, take that survey, give us your thoughts, or send a quick email, or give us a phone call and talk to us more about their airport. This airport is owned by the city and borough of Juneau. It belongs to the people of Juneau and those are the customers we’re trying to serve.”

Currently, the airport has one retail shop, Hummingbird Hollow. Food and beverage services include a restaurant, bar, and coffee shop run by ESS out of Anchorage, a contract that expires at the end of this year. Those spaces occupy 8,000 square feet, or 9 percent of the whole building.

“It’s just not how airport food and beverage concessions are run in this day and age. So we’re trying to find a model that will work better for a concessionaire, for someone who wants to run that business, as well as still serve the travelers and the Juneau public,” Fritz says.

Fritz expects a future food and beverage program to be substantially different than what it is now, and hopes it will lead to more activity and an increase in revenue.

Another change the airport is looking into is offering more “real” food in the area after security. Right now the only option in the secure area is food and beverages from vending machines.

The effort to find out what airport users and Juneau residents want started in June. As of last week, 250 online surveys were completed, but Fritz hopes that number will increase.

An estimated 1 million people use the Juneau Airport each year.