Local & State
Rental car customers to get parking upgrade at Columbia airport
Columbia Metropolitan Airport’s parking garage is undergoing a renovation that will move space for rental car customers to a covered area on the garage’s lower level, airport officials said Wednesday.
The monthlong project is intended to keep rental customers out of the weather as is the case now with parking for them on the ground level, said Lynne Douglas, an airport spokeswoman.
The lower level closed Wednesday for the start of renovation and airport customers are asked to enter through the upper level of the 13-year-old garage. Signs have been posted to direct drivers.
The project is scheduled to be completed by early April, airport officials said.
Dollars from thousands of soccer fans due this weekend
The economic impact of youth soccer will be evident in Columbia restaurants and hotels this weekend as South Carolina United FC’s annual St. Patrick’s Day Cup brings an estimated 7,400 people to the area.
The event has an economic impact of $1.3 million on the community, according to the Midlands Authority for Conventions and Sports & Tourism. The tournament features 230 teams playing a six facilities in the area, from Ballentine to Northeast Richland.
The will book an estimated 800 room nights in local hotels and eat 44,000 meals in the area, starting Friday night and running through Sunday afternoon, according to the authority.
Florence pharmaceuticl maker being bought
Pantheon, a provider of drug development and delivery solutions, has tentatively acquired Florence-based IRIX, which specializes in difficult to manufacture pharmaceutical ingredients.
Pantheon expect to close the purchase with 60 days, Pantheon announced Wednesday.
IRIX has manufacturing sites in Greenville as well as Florence.
Nation & World
Exxon CEO predicts oil prices to stay down for 2 years
– Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson expects the price of oil to remain low over the next two years because of ample global supplies and relatively weak economic growth.
“People need to kinda settle in for a while,” Tillerson said at the company’s annual investor conference in New York.
In a presentation to investors outlining its business plans through 2017, Exxon assumes a price of $55 a barrel for global crude. That’s $5 below where Brent crude, the most important global benchmark, traded on Wednesday. It’s about half of what Brent averaged between 2011 and the middle of last year.
• Billionaire John Doerr, a senior partner at a Silicon Valley venture capital firm, testified Wednesday that he was a loyal supporter of a woman who is now alleging women were denied chances to advance at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and treated as second-class citizens. Ellen Pao sued, saying she was denied a chance to advance because she is a woman and was fired in 2012 after she complained.
• At 656,000 pounds fully loaded and the length of six school buses, the Boeing 777-200ER is hard to miss. Airlines and regulators spent the past year debating how much flight tracking is necessary. Now a plan is moving forward that would require airlines, by the end of 2016, to know their jets’ positions every 15 minutes. Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 vanished, taking the lives of 239 passengers and crew in the Boeing plane in one of aviation’s greatest mysteries.