St. Louis Public Radio News
3:50 pm
Wed July 2, 2003

American Airlines Says Changes Are Nigh

St. Louis, MO – American Airlines said Tuesday it's nearing a decision on changes to be made to its infrastructure.

In a statement, American's President and CEO Gerard Arpey says the carrier will not be able to continue flying every route it has today.
Local officials have worried American's near-bankruptcy threatens St. Louis's role as a hub. Lambert Airport became an American hub when the company bought TWA.

The company has been in dire economics straights for months and is looking to cut costs. It already is flying 57 fewer airplanes than a year and has said that number will decrease by another 57 by next summer.

"The reality is we will not be able to fly every nonstop route we fly today," Arpey said in a statement. "Nor will we be able to provide the same level of service in markets that cannot profitably support our current flight schedule."

The company has three hubs at Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth and St. Louis. It also runs reservations offices in Cincinnati; Dallas/Fort Worth; Hartford, Conn.; Honolulu; Raleigh/Durham, N.C.; St. Louis and Tucson, Ariz. Its main maintenance operations are performed at bases at Fort Worth's Alliance Airport; Kansas City, Mo.; and Tulsa, Okla.

All operations at all offices are under review.

"I anticipate that we will be announcing some of our decisions shortly," Arpey said. "We want to ensure we've given careful and due consideration to all of the options placed before us."