Management & Operations

Nextel wagers millions on Las Vegas monorail

Posted on January 1, 2004

The Las Vegas Monorail Company (LVMC) signed a 12-year advertising deal with Nextel Communications Inc. that will put the Nextel brand on the monorail station across from the Las Vegas Convention Center. The agreement also involves putting the Nextel brand on one of the four-car monorail trains. Nextel’ 15,000-square-foot convention center station will showcase its wireless products and services to an estimated 1 million business travelers expected to pass through the city’s main monorail station each year. The arrangement will cost Nextel, the fifth-largest U.S. wireless carrier, about $4 million per year. Las Vegas Monorail has been offering corporate sponsorships at about $1 million per year for each train and $2 million for the remaining six stations. The four-mile monorail will connect the Las Vegas Convention Center with the large casino resorts of the Las Vegas Strip. Eventually, extensions to downtown and then to McCarran International Airport are anticipated. The system will consist of nine trains and seven stations. The monorail will run on a single rail 20 feet above the ground, reaching speeds up to 50 mph. The privately funded, $650 million project was expected to open in January, with trains scheduled to run year-round from 6 a.m. until 2 a.m. Cost of a one-way ticket will be $3. Monorail stations are located at the MGM Grand, Paris/Bally’s, the Flamingo, the Imperial Palace/Harrah’s, the Las Vegas Convention Center, the Las Vegas Hilton and the Sahara. The Las Vegas Monorail is one of the most technologically advanced urban transportation systems in the world, operating on a fully automated control system network without the need of a driver, and incorporating fail-safe protection methods throughout the software and equipment. “We are very pleased with the commitment that Nextel has made to the Las Vegas Monorail,” says John Haycock, chairman of the LVMC. “The Nextel environment on the Las Vegas Convention Center station will serve the needs of millions of monorail riders and convention center attendees for many years to come, and in a way that could be done only in Las Vegas.” Nextel experts will provide advice on its wireless services and products at their new venue, the Nextel Pavilion. There will be three-dimensional video displays featuring information about products and services, a business theater, a wireless lounge, a retail store and an open-air balcony with views of the Las Vegas strip. “We are very fortunate to have Nextel as our first station partner,” says Francois Badeau, chairman of TransMax Group, the company that created the Las Vegas Monorail Teamª and led the charge to develop the Las Vegas Monorail. “It is clear that Nextel shares our vision of the monorail as an unparalleled marketing vehicle as well as a unique mode of public transportation.”

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