Grand Rapids, MI, March 14, 2014 – Steelcase, Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry aims to establish great experiences and make every moment more meaningful for people, wherever they are. When teamed up with additional local partners, that is exactly what they have done for the millions of visitors that pass through the Gerald R. Ford International Airport each year! Experience Grand Rapids, The Gerald R. Ford International Airport and Steelcase, Inc. have collaborated for several months to redesign the Visitor Information Area at the airport, and the official ribbon cutting ceremony was held today.
Steelcase, Inc. Community Relations Director Deb Bailey, Experience Grand Rapids President Doug Small, Experience Grand Rapids Board Chair Tim Pietryga, Gerald R. Ford International Airport Executive Director Brian Ryks, and Airport Board Chairman Roger Morgan were the first to christen the new visitor area near baggage claim with a ribbon cutting which was followed by a reception.
The new visitor area is staffed by friendly city ambassadors and is a comfortable and convenient place to accommodate travelers. With a variety of spaces within the area, visitors 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 new visitor 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,” said Deb Bailey, Community Relations director, Steelcase. “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.”
Visitor Information services are provided in partnership with Experience Grand Rapids, the local convention and visitors bureau, through an ambassador program. Ambassadors service both the information desk as well as “roaming ambassadors” who travel throughout the airport with their distinct green jackets and iPads, helping to answer patron’s questions. The Visitor Information Area is staffed from 9:00 a.m. until 11 p.m. seven days a week.
“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.”
In addition to new Visitor Information Area, the airport features two Steelcase, Inc. business centers that were refreshed with new paint, desks, chairs and graphics.
“Steelcase does an incredible job of making sure our business and leisure travelers feel comfortable when they step foot in our airport,” said GFIA 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.”
About Experience GR
Established in 1927, Experience Grand Rapids (EXGR) leads the marketing of Grand Rapids/Kent County as a premier convention & visitor destination providing a significant positive impact to the West Michigan economy. Previously named the Grand Rapids/Kent County Convention & Visitors Bureau, EXGR represents the second largest city in Michigan with over one million residents.
The Gerald R. Ford International Airport (GFIA) is the second busiest airport in Michigan. The airport served over 2.23 million passengers in 2013 and over 6,000 travelers pass through GFIA each day. The Gerald R. Ford International Airport offers non-stop service to 23 major market destinations with 120 daily non-stop flights. The Gerald R. Ford International Airport is managed and operated by the Kent County Department of Aeronautics. GFIA generates over $500 million annually in economic activity throughout West Michigan and employs over 1,500 people. For more information on GFIA visit: www.grr.org or follow the airport on Twitter: @FlyGRFord.
About Steelcase, Inc.
For over 100 years, Steelcase Inc. has helped create great experiences for the world's leading organizations - wherever work happens. Steelcase and our family of brands - including Steelcase®, Coalesse®,Designtex®, Details®, Nurture®, PolyVision® and Turnstone® - offer a comprehensive portfolio of furnishings, products and services designed to unlock human promise and support social, economic and environmental sustainability. We are globally accessible through a network of channels, including approximately 670 dealers. Steelcase is a global, industry-leading and publicly traded company with fiscal 2013 revenue of $2.9 billion.