Denver International Airport moves toward becoming smoke-free | Public Spaces
Denver International Airport (DIA) will support Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock’s plans for creating a better, healthier Denver by moving toward becoming a smoke-free facility. All but one of the four indoor smoking lounges at DIA will be shut down for remodeling in order to make room for new non-smoking concessions concepts, creating a healthier environment for travelers and employees. Mayor Hancock asked airport concessionaires to join him in an effort to end smoking now and two of DIA’s three indoor smoking lounge leaseholders have acted on this challenge. Airport leadership will present the proposed new concession agreements to Denver City Council’s Business, Workforce and Sustainability Committee on Wednesday, May 23.
“I am committed to public health and the safety of everyone who visits, lives in or conducts business in our great city,” said Mayor Hancock. “DIA is the last public building in Colorado where indoor smoking lounges are still in operation. While they are legally allowed, we believe the responsible decision is to eliminate these facilities in order to better protect the wellbeing of everyone who uses the airport.”
DIA concessionaires have stepped up to shutter three of the four indoor smoking lounges at the airport almost immediately. Two concessionaires, Airport Lounges and Quiz-DIA, have committed to improving public health by partnering with the City and DIA and have agreed to close the three smoking lounges they currently operate by the end of the year. The fourth lounge, Timberline, operated by Smokin’ Bear, LLC, will shut down after its lease expires in 2018.
“We are grateful to our concession partners at DIA for being so supportive of this initiative,” said Aviation Manager Kim Day. “Eliminating smoking lounges is a positive step for our airport. As we move toward becoming completely smoke-free indoors, we will join the ranks of Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Los Angeles International Airport, John F. Kennedy International Airport, San Francisco International Airport and many other major U.S. airports who have eliminated smoking in the past few years.”
The lounges that will close this year include two Aviator’s Lounge locations, one in Jeppesen Terminal and the other on the B Concourse. The Jeppesen Terminal lounge will become a Jamba Juice and the B Concourse lounge will re-open as the Aviator’s Sports Bar, a full-service barbecue restaurant. The third lounge scheduled for closure is located inside of Mesa Verde Restaurant and Bar on the A Concourse. Mesa Verde will remain open during remodeling and will gain additional seating, including an inviting patio area for customers to enjoy while waiting for a flight. The fourth indoor smoking lounge, is inside of Timberline Steaks & Grill on Concourse C, and will remain open until 2018.
“National Jewish Health applauds Mayor Hancock’s decision to eliminate indoor smoking at DIA,” said Geri Reinardy, Chief Government and Community Relations Officer for National Jewish Health. “Nearly 1,200 Americans die every day from tobacco use and second-hand smoke is the number-one source of indoor air pollution. While indoor smoking lounges reduce some exposure to the harmful effects of tobacco smoke, they are still a serious hazard to employees and the general public. DIA’s initiative to become smoke-free will result in a healthier workplace and a safer public facility.”
According to the American Nonsmokers’ Rights Foundation, 27 of the top 35 U.S. airports are 100 percent smoke-free indoors. For a complete list of those airports, visit www.no-smoke.org.
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