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Aéroport de Bordeaux-Mérignac
|IATA: BOD – ICAO: LFBD|
|Airport type||Public / Military|
|Owner/Operator||Aéroport de Bordeaux Mérignac (SA ADBM)|
|Elevation AMSL||162 ft / 49 m|
Aquitaine region in France
|Source: French AIP|
Bordeaux–Mérignac Airport (French: Aéroport de Bordeaux-Mérignac) (IATA: BOD, ICAO: LFBD) is the international airport of Bordeaux, the ninth largest city in France. It is located in the territory Mérignac, 12 km (7.5 mi) west of Bordeaux, within the département of Gironde.
In 2013, the airport served 4,574,357 passengers, making it the sixth busiest airport in France in terms of passengers. It mainly features flights to metropolitan and leisure destinations in Europe and Northern Africa and serves as a base for Volotea. It features three passenger terminals named A, B and Billi.
Bordeaux Mérignac's origins begin in 1917, when an air field was established there. The facility was a major hub flying from Bordeaux to various destinations in Europe and North Africa. Military uses by the French Air Force was as a training centre and also as a bomber base.
World War II
During World War II the German Luftwaffe took control of the base and used it as a centre for maritime reconnaissance. Focke-Wulf Fw-200 "Condor" and Heinkel He 177 Greif aircraft of the Luftwaffe's maritime patrol bomber wing Kampfgeschwader 40 flew from the base roaming the Atlantic Ocean looking for Allied shipping.
General Charles de Gaulle took off from the airport to travel to London in 1940, and the following day he broadcast the Appeal of 18 June. The United States Army Air Forces 8th Air Force and the Royal Air Force attacked the base in 1943.
After the war Air France resumed commercial operations out of Mérignac and the re-established French Air Force returned to use the facility.
In 1951 Mérignac was turned over to NATO for use by the United States Air Force. Construction of a modern air base suitable for jet aircraft began on 1 August. Much evidence of the war remained with many warning signs still in German, scattered munitions around the facility; the perimeter was still mined; large quantities of practice bombs, and destroyed hangars and other buildings as a result of Allied air raids.
In 1957, C-119G transports from Évreux AB, France moved the USAFE Mobile Headquarters from Wiesbaden AB, Ger. to Bordeaux AB. The USAFE Mobile Headquarters constisted of nearly 100 semi-trailers fitted with desks, beds, showers, toilets which were designed to slide into any standard C-119 cargo compartment. The problem was that after they were built it was learned that several bridges in Europe could not support the weight of the individual trailers. The trailers were sent to Bordeaux for storage and eventual disposal.
On 1 October 1958, Bordeaux-Mérignac Air Base was closed to reduce USAFE expenses and manpower. All ongoing activities were moved to the NATO Chateauroux-Deols Air Base in central France. The U. S. Army operated a logistics facility at Mérignac for a few years, but ended their activities in 1961 and the entire facility was returned to French control.
During the early years of the Cold War, Bordeaux-Mérignac was a front-line NATO facility for the United States Air Forces in Europe (USAFE). As well as its civil use, the French Air Force designated Mérignac Air Base BA 106, and it has been used in its strategic air force.
As a consequence of the temporary closure of the Cazaux military base, the civil authorities have been forced to share the runway with the French Army since November 2005.
Airlines and destinations
operated by Exin
The airport is accessible by car via the A630 autoroute (exit 11b). There is also a shuttle by Jet'Bus shuttle serving the Bordeaux Saint-Jean railway station. Bus route 1 of Tram et Bus de la CUB is also serving the city centre. In the medium-term, there are plans for the tramway system to link the airport with the city centre.
Media related to Bordeaux – Mérignac Airport at Wikimedia Commons
- Official website (English)
- Aéroport de Bordeaux (Union des Aéroports Français) (French)
- Airport information for LFBD at World Aero Data. Data current as of October 2006.
- Accident history for BOD at Aviation Safety Network