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Kath
Post subject: AU TWAPosted: August 28th, 2020, 7:11 pm
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Premise
In the mid 1970s, Trans World Airlines (TWA) was left with a choice: to either make Chicago or St Louis their next main hub. In real life, they chose St Louis as to not compete too heavily with American and United. But what if they went for Chicago, and succeeded? In this thread, I will attempt to answer that question

Brief TWA History Before 1975
TWA formed as a result of a merger between Transcontinental Air Transport and Western Air Lines to becomes Transcontinental & Western Air (T&WA) in 1930 (several other small airlines were also forced into this merger, but they're not important). In 1931, TWA became a major proponent of Douglas' new DC-1, of which it operated the only one built. It later operated both the DC-2 and DC-3. Following the Air Mail Scandal in 1934, Transcontinental Air Transport and Western Air Lines split up (Western would later merge with Delta). Howard Hughes bought controlling stock in the company in 1937, and in that same year TWA purchased several Boeing 307 Stratoliners, the first pressurized aircraft produced.

TWA and Hughes famously contracted with Lockheed to develop the Lockheed Constellation in the 1940s, which would enter service just after World War II. TWA would go on to operate the type until 1967. TWA also ordered Martin 4-0-4s in 1950, and that same year changed their name to Trans World Airlines. Hughes would also go on to purchase the L-1049 Super Constellation in 1953, and in 1956 he placed orders for the Boeing 707. Hugh's large order for the CV-880 would be his downfall, as TWA's jet order climbed to $480 million. Following Hughs, Charles Tillingast became CEO and oversaw TWA establishing it's hub and spoke system, as well as what is considered TWA's golden age in the 1960s. During this period, TWA opened its now iconic JFK Flight Center designed by Eero Saarinen.

In the late 1960s, as a result of a flood 10 years earlier, Kansas City decided to build a new airport 18 miles north on land currently owned by TWA which they were using as their main overhaul base. TWA vetoed designs similar to Dulles, as they wanted the gates to be 100 feet from the street. As a result, the airport resembles 3 horseshoes, and construction overruns ended up costing the city a total of $250. Funnily enough, as Vice President Agnew was opening the airport in 1972, a hijacking was taking place that would force airports to install security checkpoints, rendering the airport obsolete. As such, TWA began searching for a new main hub, and in the mid-1970s, had narrowed it down to St. Louis-Lambert and Chicago-O'Hare...

Point of Divergence and the 1980s
In this universe, TWA makes what many now think would be the smart decision: choosing Chicago. TWA had established sizable and competing position there in the 1970s, and when they pulled the plug on their Chicago hub in 1979 they accounted for some 20-25% of the total traffic there. But here, they continue to increase their presence in Chicago, while also keeping their Kansas City Hub (albeit it gets downsized and remains somewhat small until the 2010s, but kept due to the overhaul base and historical ties). By 1982, Chicago has become the new main hub of TWA, and is able to be in a stronger position by the time deregulation hits in 1979.

As a result, TWA is not spun off from its parent corporation and sold to Carl Ichan (aka Satan) in 1985. By the 1980s, American and TWA had begun to infringe on United at O'Hare, who was in turn further hampered when TWA bough Pan Am's Pacific Division in 1985. United would be further weakened by strikes, and would file for bankruptcy in 1987 and would struggle through the next decade. Since TWA does not make St. Louis its main hub, Ozark continues to operate past 1986, eventually becoming something akin to Southwest or Alaska Airlines in our world.

1990s and 2000s
Pan Am and Eastern both go out the same way they do in our world in 1991, and TWA takes delivery of the 747-400, which replace its aging Classic 747s. TWA also places orders for the 757 and 717 in the 1990s, placing them into service later in the decade. By the mid 1990s, United had seen a short, few year turn-around to profitability. But poor management decisions and a large amount of debt taken to order new aircraft hampered the airline who once again filed for bankruptcy in 1998. United and TWA then enter into merger talks, and as a result the DOJ allows United and TWA to merge. United renamed a subsidiary of TWA from 1998-1999, and the two formally merged on January 1, 2000.

9/11 still occurs, but with TWA and American aircraft used instead. As such, the market takes a downturn, and TWA files for bankruptcy in 2003. TWA emerges 2 years later in 2005, and places orders for the 737 NG. That year, US Airways mergers with America West in the same manner as OTL, and a year later they successfully merge with Delta which they failed to do in OTL. As such, Northwest continues to exist, later merging with American in 2009 who had never fully recovered from 9/11 and their subsequent bankruptcy
2010-Present
TWA entered the new decade by revealing a new livery for the first time in 15 years called the "Modern Twin-stripe Scheme" on a new 737-800. By 2011, TWA's fleet had grown to 570 aircraft. In 2011, TWA moves its headquarters back to where it started: Kansas City, after having been based in Chicago from 1982-1993 and New York again from 1993-2011. The move back to Kansas City coincided with a 3 year construction project which saw the airport consolidate into two new terminal buildings. As a result of the Southwest and AirTran merger, Southwest sells their 55 717s to Northwest who finally use them to replace their DC-9s in 2014. A year later, Continental and TWA merge creating this timelines 3 legacy carriers (US Airways, Northwest, and Trans World Airlines). These three airlines remain supreme to this day, and as with OTL are, in this blessed year of 2020, facing their own challenges with the Coronavirus pandemic after seeing a little over a decade of merger and growth while adding new aircraft like the A220 and A320neo to their fleets. Even before the pandemic, TWA had begun trimming its fleet down, first by retiring the A318 in 2017, 767-300ER in 2018, and soon the 767-400ER, 717-200, most 757-200s, and many older 777-200s. The plane is to have a fleet consisting of A220s, A320s, A330s, A350s, 737s, and 777s by the beginning of the next decade.
[ img ]
Flow chart of this timeline's consolidations and mergers since 2000
Current Fleet
x35 A220-100 (since 2019) (60 in service by 2023)
x5 A220-300 (since 2020) (45 in service by 2026)
x56 A319-100 (since 1999)
x119 A320-200 (since 1993) (Older aircraft being retired)
x15 A320neo (since 2018) (80 in service by 2026)
x88 A321-200 (since 2001)
x7 A321neo (since 2019) (120 in service by 2030)
x25 A330-200 (since 2002)
x19 A330-300 (since 1995)
x5 A330-900neo (since 2019) (35 in service by 2027)
x10 A350-900 (since 2018) (35 in service by 2022)
x10 717-200 (since 1997) (To be retired by August 2021)
x102 737-700 (since 2009)
x132 737-800 (since 2006)
x52 737-900 (since 2009)
x55 757-200 (since 1997) (To be phased out by mid-2020s)
x21 757-300 (since 2002) (To be phased out by mid-2020s)
x16 767-400ER (Since 2013) (To be retired by or before 2022)
x39 777-200ER (since 2000) (Older planes being retired)
x0 777-9X (22 on order)

Total: 811 Aircraft (Not including Trans World Express fleet)

Selected Retirements
x15 A318-100 (2003-2018)
x22 767-200 (1982-2005; N601TW now at TWA Flight Museum in Kansas City, MO)
x33 767-300 (1995-2018)
x77 727-200 (1968-2003)
x737-500 (2015-2017; acquired from Continental)
x46 747-400 (1991-2019; N640TW repainted into 1975-1995 scheme and placed at TWA Flight Museum)
x28 Convair 880 (1961-1975; N819AJ later purchased back by the airline 2014 and is still undergoing restoration)
x23 DC-9 (1966-1982; IRL fleet life extended due to Ozark, absence of OZ purchase means type retired first time like IRL TWA)
x16 DC-10 (1985-1990, Acquired from Pan Am); x55 (1998-2004; Acquired from United, most were placed into storage shortly after merger)
x5 L-1011-500 (1985-2002, former Pan Am)



Current Hubs
Houston-George Bush
Chicago O'Hare (Main)
Kansas City International (Main Maintenance Base)
Los Angeles International
New York-JFK
Newark Liberty
San Francisco International (Main Pacific)
Washington-Dulles
Antonia B. Won Pat (Guam; Trans World Micronesia Hub)

Focus Cities
Boston-Logan
Denver International
San Juan

_________________
Current Project(s):
AU TWA
AU Ozark
Any random IRL TWA plane I wanna do don't judge me


Last edited by Kath on December 8th, 2020, 9:31 pm, edited 15 times in total.

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Kath
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: August 28th, 2020, 7:19 pm
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TWA has operated the A330 since 1995, when it ordered them in 1992 to replace the 747-100/200 on European routes (London, Berlin, Orly, etc) as well as routes for the Middle East (Tel Aviv, Cairo, Riyadh). They debuted in 1995 in the then-new 1995 Globe Scheme. TWA currently operates 25 A330-200s and 19 A330-300s. The A330 has become a staple of TWA's long-haul operations, and they have gone on to order the A330-900neo which was placed into service in 2019.
[ img ]

_________________
Current Project(s):
AU TWA
AU Ozark
Any random IRL TWA plane I wanna do don't judge me


Last edited by Kath on September 1st, 2020, 5:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Ukraineball
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: August 28th, 2020, 8:25 pm
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Joined: July 2nd, 2020, 8:00 am
Location: Ukraine - Kyiv
Cool!
Continue!

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Currently working on:
Delta Fleet History
and Other Arts


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Hood
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: August 29th, 2020, 10:07 am
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Joined: July 31st, 2010, 10:07 am
An interesting AU idea, one to keep an eye on for sure.

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English Electric Canberra FD
Interwar RN Capital Ships
Super-Darings
Never-Were British Aircraft


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Kath
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: August 31st, 2020, 5:47 pm
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TWA ordered the 737NG in the late 2000s as part of a fleet expansion plan to help expand TWA's domestic and North American reach to many cities in Canada and Mexico (such as Montreal and Cancun). The 737-800 entered service first, back in 2006, and remains the most numerous version of the 737 in TWA's fleet with a total of 97 in service as of 2020. Both the 737-700 and 737-900 entered service in 2009, with 30 and 46 airframes in the fleet, respectively. As of 2020, no replacement plans have been put in place, even as the oldest airframes turn 16 years old.
[ img ]

_________________
Current Project(s):
AU TWA
AU Ozark
Any random IRL TWA plane I wanna do don't judge me


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Kath
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: September 1st, 2020, 4:42 pm
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Much like the real TWA, the Boeing 757 became a part of the fleet in the 1990s during a decade of rapid expansion (which would culminate in the 2003 bankruptcy). The 757-200 is the most numerous variant , with a total of 55 in operation as of 2020. From 1998 through 2002, TWA operated many of United's 757 before selling them to American, Continental, or back to lessors since United had operated their 757s with the RB211 engines as opposed to TWA who used the PW2000 (Some wound back up in TWA's fleet following their merger with Continental). In 2002, TWA placed the larger 757-300 into service, mainly on transcontinental US routes, and today operates 21 -300s.
[ img ]

_________________
Current Project(s):
AU TWA
AU Ozark
Any random IRL TWA plane I wanna do don't judge me


Last edited by Kath on November 26th, 2020, 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Ukraineball
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: September 1st, 2020, 5:30 pm
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Joined: July 2nd, 2020, 8:00 am
Location: Ukraine - Kyiv
))) Nice work

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Currently working on:
Delta Fleet History
and Other Arts


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Kath
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: September 3rd, 2020, 9:21 pm
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TWA ordered the A320 in 1989 to begin replacing the 727, which had been a mainstay of the domestic fleet since the 1960s. The A320 arrived in small batches from 1993-2006 until the present 119 total A320-200s. To meet the growing demand, as well as to replace United's 727s and older 737s, more A320s were ordered alongside the A321, A319, and A318 in 1997/1998. The A318s currently service long trans-con routes too thin for the 757 such as JFK-SMF, PHX-FLL, or LAX-RDU. As of 2020, several A320neos and now A321neos and A220s are replacing older airframes.
[ img ]

_________________
Current Project(s):
AU TWA
AU Ozark
Any random IRL TWA plane I wanna do don't judge me


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Kath
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: September 3rd, 2020, 9:26 pm
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Double post!
Some special A320 schemes I did (along with the base scheme):
N7053T: A special livery based off the flag of Chicago, which serves as a major hub for TWA and was once the headquarters for the airline in the 1980s and early 1990s
N7036T: Special Kansas City Cheif's scheme which was rolled out in 2019. Kansas City has long been a major base for TWA, especially after their headquarters were moved back there in 2011
[ img ]

_________________
Current Project(s):
AU TWA
AU Ozark
Any random IRL TWA plane I wanna do don't judge me


Last edited by Kath on September 14th, 2020, 2:11 am, edited 2 times in total.

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rifleman2
Post subject: Re: AU TWAPosted: September 3rd, 2020, 11:39 pm
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Joined: February 22nd, 2015, 10:26 am
very nice


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