Today, Midway Airport serves as a focus city for Dallas-based Southwest Airlines and Orlando-based AirTran Airways.
Originally named Chicago Air Park, Midway Airport was built on a 320-acre (1.3 km) plot in 1923 and consisted of a single cinder runway that primarily served airmail services. During its first full year of operation in 1928, the airfield was home to twelve hangars and four runways, lit for night operations. A new passenger terminal and administration building, funded by a bond issue, was dedicated in 1931 by Chicago mayor Anton Cermak, and in the following year Midway Airport earned the title of "World's Busiest" with over 100,846 passengers riding on 60,947 flights. In 1941, Midway Airport joined World War II efforts because of its long runways and mid-continent position.
The airport was officially renamed on July 8, 1949 by a unanimous vote in the City Council to "Chicago Midway Airport" in honor of the World War II Battle of Midway a€“ not after Midway Airlines, as many have believed, nor because the airport is located at the west end of 59th Street (the eastern end of which is part of Chicago's historic Midway Plaisance).
By 1967, reconstruction had begun at the airport, adding three new concourses with 28 gates and three ticket counters, and in 1968 the city invested $10 million in renovation funds, The funds partly supported construction of the Stevenson Expressway, which proved to be a major route for passengers to the airport, and Midway saw the return of major airlines during that year, serving 1,663,074 passengers on more than 274,062 flights, aided in part by the introduction of jets, such as the McDonnell Douglas DC-9, Boeing 727, and Boeing 737, that were capable of using Midway's shorter runways, which the Boeing 707 and Douglas DC-8 could not. In 1979, Midway Airlines began operations, the first to do so after the Airline Deregulation Act of 1978, and went on to become the flagship carrier at Midway before ending its operations in 1991. The Chicago Transit Authority displaced the original location of the Carlton Midway Inn to open a new CTA terminal at the airport on October 31, 1993 for the newly established Chicago 'L' Orange Line, which connected Midway to Chicago's Loop.
Continuing with the expansion project, a pedestrian bridge over Cicero Avenue was constructed in 2000. In June 2004, Mayor Daley and airline officials celebrated the completion of the Terminal Development Program.
Simultaneous to Midway's expansion, ATA Airlines began rapid expansion at Chicago Midway in the early 2000s, and prior to 2004, ATA offered significant scheduled service to destinations from Midway Airport and was the airport's dominant carrier, occupying and operating 14 of the 17 gates in Concourse A. ATA Airlines opened their Chicago-Midway hub in 1992, and was the largest carrier at Midway as recently as 2004.
Due to repeated cancellations to its schedule, ATA then offered non-stop flights to 4 destinations, and mainly operated out of only 2 gates in Concourse B.
On April 20, 2009, a $2.5 billion deal to privatize the airport via a 99-year lease fell through when the consortium could not put together financing.
Chicago Midway Airport is the second largest passenger airport in the Chicago metropolitan area, and is the second busiest in the state of Illinois after Chicago O'Hare International Airport.
The original fully developed 1940s layout included eight runways that crisscrossed the 8-by-8-block (one square mile) property. Because Midway is surrounded by buildings and other development, the landing thresholds of the runways are displaced to provide a proper obstacle clearance. Southwest Airlines is the dominant carrier at Midway, operating more than 225 daily flights out of 29 of Midway's 43 gates to over 45 destinations across the United States.
An AirTran Airways Boeing 717-200 with a Southwest Airlines Boeing 737-700 in the background. The carriers transporting the most passengers from Chicago Midway Airport are Southwest and AirTran. For complete information on flights to and from Chicago Midway International Airport, please see the airport's website.
Before the rise of O'Hare in the late 1950s, Midway was the world's busiest airport and one of the key hubs in the U.S. Both American Airlines and United Airlines ended all scheduled service to Midway in September 2006, in favor of concentrating Chicago-area operations at the larger nearby O'Hare International Airport. Big Sky Airlines, which commenced nonstop service on December 3, 2006 between Springfield, Illinois and Midway, later expanded the service to include daily nonstop flight to Eau Claire, Wisconsin, beginning on March 17.
Mesa Airlines, which began nonstop service from MDW in early 2007, discontinued all flights to Decatur and Quincy, Illinois, effective November 9, 2007. Chicago Midway International Airport was once the largest hub of ATA Airlines and its wholly-owned regional airline partner Chicago Express Airlines, which operated as ATA Connection . Continental Airlines provided daily service from Chicago-Midway to Cleveland and Newark until May 2008. Among the other airlines that used to frequent Midway were Access Air, Kiwi International Airlines, US Airways, MetroJet, Ozark Air Lines (2000-2001), and Pan American Airways (1998a€“2004). Southwest Airlines Flight 1248, a Boeing 737-700, after it skidded off runway 31C on December 8, 2005. On June 30, 1956, United Airlines Flight 718, a Douglas DC-7, was headed for Midway Airport. On December 8, 1972, United Airlines Flight 553, a Boeing 737-200, crashed into a residential area outside Midway during landing. Exactly 33 years later, on December 8, 2005, Southwest Airlines Flight 1248, a Boeing 737-700 inbound from Baltimore-Washington International Airport in Baltimore, Maryland, slid off the runway while attempting to land at the airport in a heavy snow storm. The above content comes from Wikipedia and is published under free licenses – click here to read more. The airport's current IATA code MDW has been in use since it was implemented in 1949 when Chicago Municipal Airport was renamed Chicago Midway Airport, although the airline schedule books continued to call it CHI until airline flights began at O'Hare. The site was selected following the destruction of the Wingfoot Air Express when it crashed into the Illinois Trust and Savings Building, killing thirteen people, and the city decided to close the Grant Park air strip.
Air traffic control was handled by flagmen, who would be positioned at the end of the runways; they were responsible for controlling 14,498 flight operations carrying 41,660 passengers that year.

During some years thereafter New York's airport (Newark, then LaGuardia) was the busiest airline airport in the United States, but Midway passed LaGuardia in the early 1950s and retained the title until O'Hare claimed it in 1961. The war years proved to be a boom for Midway, which saw new construction funded in part by $1 million in federal monies from the Works Progress Administration, and work on additional runways moved forward in 1941 when a court ordered the Chicago and Western Indiana Railroad to reroute tracks in the vicinity of the airfield. Midway Airlines helped revitalize the airport and led the way for other discount carriers, who benefited from Midway's lower costs and close proximity to Chicago's Loop, to prosper. The CTA's Orange Line connects Midway to downtown Chicago via elevated train transportation.
Daley announced the historic Midway Airport Terminal Development Program, which was launched the next year.
The expansion project resulted in the addition of 14 gates (from 29 to 43), with the airport now providing 43 gates on 3 concourses. However, after the airline declared bankruptcy in October 2004, scheduled service from Midway significantly decreased.
On May 11, 2007, the airline added new service from Chicago to Oakland and Ontario, California. The new area will complement the existing walkway to gates A4A and A4B, and will feature new concessions and a new holding room. It ranked highest in customer satisfaction among medium-sized airports (10 million to 30 million passengers per year) in J. Both the FAA and the airlines ensure safety by adhering to calculated load limits and various weather minimums. In 2008, a total of 17,340,497 passengers were carried through MDW, a 10.52% decrease from the previous year. Despite its small size compared to O'Hare, though, Midway is still a vital transportation terminal.
However, citing poor demand, both the Springfield and Eau Claire flights were discontinued on June 9, 2007. The flights, which were operated by Air Midwest, were terminated citing poor passenger demand.
Over the Grand Canyon it collided with a TWA Super Constellation, killing all 128 people on both planes. The airplane broke through the barrier fence of the airport, and came to rest at the intersection of 55th Street and Central Avenue bordering the airport at its northwest corner.
Passengers can board Orange Line trains at a station in the airport terminal, which runs to downtown Chicago and the Loop (transit time about 25 minutes). It is bordered by 55th Street, Cicero Avenue (terminal entrance), 63rd Street, and Central Avenue. Both the Stevenson Expressway and Chicago Transit Authority's Orange Line provide passengers access to downtown Chicago.
In 1926, the Chicago City Council leased the land for commercial purposes from the Chicago Board of Education at a rate of $1560 per year. The official observation site for Chicago's weather records was also moved to Midway during that year from the downtown area and would remain there until it was moved again, this time to O'Hare, in 1980. The number of passengers rose to 3.5 million the next year and reached a height of 10 million in 1959. Midway Airport is the terminus of the line, which traverses the southwest portion of the city before ending up in the loop and cycling back to Midway again.
In 2001, the new 900,000-square-foot (84,000 m) Midway Airport terminal building opened, offering expanded ticket counters, spacious baggage claim areas, traveler information and a short walking distance to airline gates.
A new 6,300-space economy parking garage, including a new bridge and roadway used exclusively for buses shuttling passengers to and from the terminal, opened in December 2005. These new additions marked the first time ATA increased service at Chicago Midway in almost three years. The area where the walkway to gates A4A and A4B meet the main terminal has been widened and further down the walkway near the gates is a new 2 level waiting area and food court in the shape of a half circle covered in glass for airfield viewing. The consortium operating under the name of Midway Investment and Development Company LLC consisted of Vancouver Airport Services, Citi Infrastructure Investors and Boston's John Hancock Life Insurance. In 2005, Chicago Midway International Airport was the 30th busiest airport in the United States in terms of passenger traffic. By the late 1970s the shorter northa€“south and easta€“west runway pairs had been closed, though some were converted to taxiways.
Because of the displaced landing thresholds, the runways have shorter distances available for landings than for takeoffs. United Airlines was headquartered at Midway in the pre-O'Hare days, and American Airlines was originally based at Midway until it moved its headquarters to New York City in the mid-1930s.
However, Continental has stated it will maintain all operations at nearby Chicago O'Hare International Airport. A 6-year-old boy was killed as a passenger in a vehicle that was struck by the plane after it skidded into the street. This same station doubles as a stop for many CTA-run buses that serve the surrounding areas. A look at lost and found in airports, train stations By Kori Rumore and Phil Geib Metra Transportation Security Administration O'Hare International Airport Ventra BNSF Midway Airport Did you forget something?Got your wallet, purse, phone or diaper bag?

The airport's northern half is within the Garfield Ridge community area, and the southern half is within the Clearing community area. Midway Airport is the second largest passenger airport in the Chicago metropolitan area, as well as the state of Illinois, after Chicago O'Hare International Airport. On December 12, 1927, Midway was dedicated as Chicago Municipal Airport by Chicago Mayor William H.
This video of Chicago Midway Airport in 1954 shows the increase in traffic that Midway Airport experienced throughout the 1950s. Three years earlier, in 1982, the City of Chicago purchased Midway Airport from the Chicago Board of Education for $16 million. The Midway Airport parking garage opened in 1999, bringing covered parking to the airport for the first time.
A 50,000-square-foot (4,600 m) food court opened with Chicago-style food and retail options, and in 2002, Midway welcomed the return of direct international service after a 40-year absence with the opening of the new Federal Inspection Service facility in Concourse A. However, just five months later, ATA announced they would end service to Ontario on January 7, 2008. It was awarded the contract in October 2008 by the City Council which voted 49-0 to approve it. In its 80-year history of passenger traffic, Midway Airport has had 21 incidents and accidents, and only one accident since 1976.
The other four original runways remain in use, all significantly strengthened and enhanced, but essentially the same lengths as always. Since the merger of Northwest Airlines into Delta, Delta is now the second largest carrier at Midway, surpassing AirTran in number of daily flights and year round destinations.
There was also a very large presence from TWA and Eastern Air Lines, as well as several others. The average train ride on the Orange Line from the Loop to Chicago Midway International Airport is about 20a€“25 minutes, compared to about 45 minutes from O'Hare.
Midway is one of the few airports in the United States that have rapid transit train to terminal service. However, by 1959, the airport had proved unable to handle larger aircraft and higher passenger loads. The garage, offering 3,000 hourly and daily parking spaces, is connected to the Midway terminal building for convenient access to ticket counters and baggage claim areas. The consortium would have operated the airport and collected airport parking, concession and passenger facility charges. The airport was extensively renovated in 1958 and, again, in 1967, after which several of the legacy carriers resumed service after a period of some years.
The unique one-square-mile footprint of Midway Airport is due to its connection to the Chicago Board of Education. By 1961, the airport faced a 60% drop in passenger traffic, largely due to the opening of O'Hare in 1955. Midway was also a hub for the startup Midway Airlines in the 1980s, and a focus city for former Vanguard Airlines from 1997a€“2000. On April 3, 2008, ATA Airlines ended all operations, including service to the four cities the airline still served at Chicago-Midway. Where's your laptop?If you were a traveler or explorer in the city over the holidays, you may have had unfortunate moments of absent-mindedness and are now a bag lighter and shielded against the cold by only one mitten. In 1962, United Airlines, the first major carrier to serve Midway, ceased operations at the airport, the last remaining carrier to do so during this period of decline. Due to the short runways, widebody aircraft are impractical, and even Boeing 737s must occasionally take off less than fully loaded on hot summer days when aircraft performance is substantially reduced. That's why we recently asked local attractions, airports and transportation hubs to describe what items can commonly be found in their lost and found areas. In most instances, one-room school houses were located on this land, the balance of which was farmed to provide funds for the operation of the school.
As township school districts consolidated, much of this excess land was typically sold for other purposes. The Chicago Board of Education continued to own the Midway Airport section and rent it to the City of Chicago for airport operations until 1982, when an education funding crisis forced the Board of Education to sell the land to the City of Chicago for $16 million. Items with an estimated worth of $500 or more are sent to TSA headquarters in Arlington, Va. Each line has its own lost and found office, which houses items left on trains, in the stations or elsewhere on railroad property.Metra representative Michael Gillis says it can sometimes take a day or so for an item to become available in a lost and found office. Bikes and groceries are left behind on buses, while riders in rail cars tend to leave Ventra cards, clothing, cellphones and umbrellas.Nonperishable items are logged and held in terminals and bus stations designated by their routes. Tolman also pointed to an Associated Press story from May 1975, which reports that a parakeet was found in a paper bag on a bus.

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