SFO trying to land summer Airbus visit 

Coming on the heels of the Airbus A380’s inaugural U.S. landings in Los Angeles and New York on Monday, San Francisco International Airport plans on its own visit from the massive "superjumbo" jet sometime this summer.

Airport spokesman Mike McCarron said no date has been set, but the airport is looking forward to welcoming the 555-seat, double-decker behemoths to its international gates, already equipped to handle what some say is the next big trend in air travel.

An A380 touched down on U.S. soil for the first time on Monday at 12:10 p.m. EDT at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport, followed about 20 minutes later by another plane at Los Angeles International Airport.

Headquartered in Toulouse, France, Airbus is a French subsidiary of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company. The flights are the kickoff to a series of similar events to determine whether the giants are compatible with facilities, such as gates, at the major U.S. airports. Many of these airports, including SFO, have spent millions in upgrading facilities to accommodate the plane.

SFO has already worked upgrades into its International Terminal project, which was completed in 2000, to ensure that the Airbus A380 would fit comfortably there. Of the 23 total gates in that terminal, four were built extra-large to allow space for the airplane, McCarron said.

tramroop@examiner.com

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