The folks who run the San Fernando Valley’s commercial airport have been struggling with an identity crisis at the popular transportation hub.
Their cure last week resulted in a split personality.
For marketing purposes the landing strip known as Burbank Bob Hope Airport is now called Hollywood Burbank Airport. It was also Hollywood Burbank Airport from 1967 to 1978.
While the new name is for branding purposes, for legal purposes the facility will still be known as Burbank Bob Hope Airport.
Tom Flavin, CEO of the Burbank Chamber of Commerce, says sometimes change is not easy.
“I think that like anything else there are people on both sides of the issue. Bob Hope was certainly a mainstay in Burbank for many years and I’m sure there are people who are disappointed,” Flavin said. “I’m no expert on branding so I’ll leave it to the experts to determine how to maximize the potential of the airport. Burbank and Hollywood are media centers and I can see the reasoning behind trying to leverage that brand.”
Leron Gubler, President and CEO of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, thinks the name change is a good move.
“We are actually very pleased with the decision by the airport commission. Many Hollywood residents and businesses use this airport frequently. It will be nice to have the name ‘Hollywood’ included, which acknowledges its service to our community,” Gubler wrote in an email.
This is the seventh time airport officials have played the rename game.
The latest effort began in December, 2014 when the authority awarded a $50,000 contract to South Pasadena-based branding firm Anyone Collective.
When the process is complete, the authority will have paid Anyone Collective $73,950, airport spokeswoman Lucy M. Burghdorf said.
The new-old name is meant to lure more out-of-town passengers to Burbank instead of LAX.
“The (airport authority) commission, the staff and the airlines that serve the airport have recognized the need to develop stronger geographic recognition for the airport, so that prospective passengers traveling to Southern California from outside the region will become more aware of its location and proximity to the area’s most popular tourist and business destinations,” airport Executive Director Dan Feger said in a statement at the time that the contract was approved. “We think that a clear geographic identity and creative marketing tools will help us broaden our passenger base.”
Burghdorf notes that the airport is close to attractions such as the movies studios in Burbank, Universal Studios Hollywood, the Rose Bowl, Griffith Park, Hollywood and the Hollywood Bowl.
The remainder of the first phase will be the creation of branding materials, including an airport logo. The second phase will focus on the strategic implementation of the new Hollywood Burbank Airport brand identity.
It’s not known at this point when new Hollywood Burbank Airport signs will be going up.
Anyone Collective is scheduled to discuss timing of the roll-out with the authority’s Operations Committee on May 16. “Everything just can’t magically happen overnight. They will come out with a schedule of how this will unfold,” Burghdorf said. “But we’re already calling it Hollywood Burbank Airport.”
Hope’s daughter, Linda Hope, could not be reached for comment on the name change.
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