Wednesday, October 04, 2006


On October 3, 2006 at Tuesdays@FUTURE, those at the table participated in a discussion of the Digital Airport Initiative ( which is a local organization attempting to bring innovative communication to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. (

The goal of this initiative is a public/private economic development collaboration that transforms the airport into an ultra high-speed high-tech communication venue for regional activity in Northeast Ohio. The airport is visited by 11.5 million passengers annually. These are the people who bring money into the community. Also most often these are the decision makers in their businesses. There is limited exposure by travelers to Cleveland with most exposure at the airport, then on the freeways and hotels.

This new initiative is designed to embrace the technology revolution. There is frustration with the same old technology, same as other airports. It provides for free standing displays in food courts, in baggage areas, and wherever people are standing around waiting.

What is particular to this initiative is its local ownership and direction which provides a greater degree of openness to local stories. The current airport contract is with a French company which provides much the same advertising at airports nationwide. This initiative not only would provide more local stories and content but also will provide income and taxes feeding the local economy. The new contract will be for a period of ten years.

Some of the activities of the initiative are:
Dynamic collaboration
Unique experience within airport
Self sustaining and revenue building (not non-profit)
Phase 1 Cle-TV Network: narrow cast network
Touch screens
Kiosks- engagement w/travelers
Short form content
Stories: clusters, universities, non-profits, virtual tours, what makes Cleveland distinctive
USB port downloads connections to maps, hotels, events
Phase 2 Idea-Port Interactive : Digital environment assets
Unique display applications
Early stage technology incubator for display applications

A great presentation of the initiative may be found at


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