Wichita airport name won't change for a while

Published On: Mar 04 2014 08:32:53 PM CST   Updated On: Mar 05 2014 09:24:02 AM CST

Those who pushed for renaming the Wichita airport, "Dwight D. Eisenhower National Airport" are excited.

"I feel it's a victory for Wichita and the people of Kansas," petition organizer Jan Harrison said after the city council vote.

But, getting council approval is one thing.  It's another thing to actually make the name change happen.

"I think it's an enormous task," advertising executive Susan Bowers of Media Partners Inc. says.  "They'll have a lot of work to do over the next few months."

Bowers says when a name is so well-established--like Mid-Continent--it takes much more than the stroke of a pen.  Not only is the name everywhere--from highway signs, to advertising, to wall placards--it's also what everybody is used to.

"The airport is still going to be the airport," Bowers adds.  "They're really not changing who they are, they're just changing their name.  But, it is a big deal because of the cost involved and the length of time it takes to accomplish something like that."

Airport director Victor White says signage is indeed a big expense, which includes designing a new logo.  Though, he says the new logo may look similar to the old one in order to save on cost.

Still, the old logo won't be going away overnight.  White says the FAA isn't likely to approve the name change until mid-summer.  The FAA also has to issue the airport a new operating license.  He says it's too early to say whether the name change will be slowly launched over time, or whether it will happen in a big splash when the new airport terminal is opened a year from now.