The Airline History Museum, which has been at Kansas City’s Wheeler Downtown Airport for 35 years, is in a fight with Signature Flight Support.
In a petition at Change.org, museum officials note: “The Airline History Museum and Lockheed Constellation have been a landmark of Kansas City since 1986. Signature Flight Support wants to close the museum. Why…You might ask? Well we don’t know. We are written into the master lease and are a tenant through 2050 as part of that lease. Signature does not pay rent to the city for our property but are demanding that we pay rent to them.”
But officials with Signature Flight Support say the court fight is over and the FBO won.
“While Signature Flight Support would not typically comment on a legal matter, we feel it’s important to clarify statements made by the Airline History Museum (AHM) regarding the organization’s former leasehold at the Kansas City Charles B. Wheeler Downtown Airport,” officials said in a statement sent to General Aviation News.
“AHM filed a lawsuit against Signature Flight Support and the City of Kansas City, Missouri, requesting the court to find, among other things, that AHM is a third party beneficiary of the master lease between Signature Flight Support and the city, which expires in December 2035. However, it was the determined by the court that AHM was not a third-party beneficiary of the master lease and that the termination date of AHM’s sublease with Signature Flight Support was Dec. 31, 2020.”
“Furthermore, FAA airport grant assurances require AHM be charged fair market value for the space it occupies at the Downtown Airport. One of the issues in the ongoing legal dispute between Signature Flight Support and AHM is AHM’s failure to pay rent for at least a year,” the statement continued.
“While we support AHM’s mission to memorialize aviation history, the circumstance surrounding its sublease on airport property are substantially more complex than portrayed by AHM and recent media coverage.”
Attempts to reach museum officials for comment were unsuccessful.
The petition at Change.org remains up, with more than 6,800 signatures as of April 21, 2021.