Visitor information area redesigned at Ford airport

The redesigned visitor information area at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Cascade Township. (March 14, 2014)
The redesigned visitor information area at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Cascade Township. (March 14, 2014)

CASCADE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) – The redesigned Visitor Information Area at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport was unveiled Friday.

Experience Grand Rapids, the airport and Steelcase, Inc. collaborated for several months on the project.

The Visitor Information Area is located near the baggage claim at the facility in Kent County’s Cascade Township.

Officials cut the ribbon on the redesigned visitor information area at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Cascade Township. (March 14, 2014)
Officials cut the ribbon on the redesigned visitor information area at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Cascade Township. (March 14, 2014)

It is staffed from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. seven days a week by friendly city ambassadors who also travel throughout the airport with their distinct green jackets and iPads, helping to answer patrons’ questions.

The Visitor Information Area includes a variety of spaces where patrons can relax and browse on provided iPads, or use the interactive walk-up screen to quickly find what they need, such as area restaurants, hotel contact information, cab services, weather, etc. The design thinking and furniture for the space were provided by Steelcase.

“We see this new information center as an attractive, purposeful landing place for people to either get a great first impression of the area or to have a positive, helpful experience at GFIA and in West Michigan,” Steelcase Community Relations Director Deb Bailey said in a news release. “This space serves as a nice touch point for travelers to be welcomed to West Michigan, speak one-on-one with someone ready to lend a hand, wait for baggage, sit and unwind, and gain easy access to information through smart technology in a relaxed, modern setting. It is an exciting addition to this airport in our wonderful, ever-growing city.”

“This energized and very functional space for visitor interaction is much more reflective of the overall Grand Rapids brand,” said Experience Grand Rapids President Doug Small. “With world-class infrastructure and design from our partners at Steelcase and the ability to serve today’s technologically advanced traveler, visitor satisfaction at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport will move to the next level.”

“Steelcase does an incredible job of making sure our business and leisure travelers feel comfortable when they step foot in our airport,” said Ford airport Executive Director Brian Ryks. “We are thrilled to have partnered with Steelcase and Experience Grand Rapids to redesign the visitor information area. The new space will be enjoyed by millions of passengers and visitors each year, and provide our Experience Grand Rapids Ambassador staff a wonderful area to assist West Michigan travelers.”

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