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Lambert airport is preparing for its name change next year

About 1 million passengers come through Lambert airport every month. Photo taken in December 2016.
Mary Delach Leonard | St. Louis Public Radio
About 1 million passengers come through Lambert airport every month.

Visitors to Lambert-St. Louis International Airport can expect to see signs with the airport’s new name sometime in late January. The change will flip the name of airport founder Albert Bond Lambert with the name of the city — to St. Louis Lambert International Airport.

Airport director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge said the goal is to emphasize the airport’s geographic location — which will help in marketing and outreach efforts — while continuing to recognize the legacy of Lambert who started the airport nearly 100 years ago.

St. Louis residents will probably notice little change when they go to the airport because fewer signs will be affected than people might expect, she said.

“So much of our signage doesn’t have the official airport name. We have tons of signage out here, but it’s limited to directional signage or maybe the airlines' usage of it,’’ Hamm-Niebruegge said.

The airport’s three letter designation code will remain the same: S-T-L.

The name change was approved by the mayor and board of aldermen in October. An airport working group had proposed “St. Louis International Airport at Lambert Field,” but St. Louis aviation buffs and descendants of Lambert objected.

Hamm-Niebruegge said the new name keeps Lambert prominent, while allowing the airport to adopt a more cohesive and global marketing platform.

“I think it is important to not forget the history and who he was and his role in aviation, as well as in the airport,’’ she said. “The name change was never about forgetting that. The name change was to unify this airport with the region and tie those two together.’’

Follow Mary Leonard on Twitter: @marydleonard

Mary Delach Leonard is a veteran journalist who joined the St. Louis Beacon staff in April 2008 after a 17-year career at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, where she was a reporter and an editor in the features section. Her work has been cited for awards by the Missouri Associated Press Managing Editors, the Missouri Press Association and the Illinois Press Association. In 2010, the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis honored her with a Spirit of Justice Award in recognition of her work on the housing crisis. Leonard began her newspaper career at the Belleville News-Democrat after earning a degree in mass communications from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville, where she now serves as an adjunct faculty member. She is partial to pomeranians and Cardinals.