The City of Las Vegas and often known simply as Vegas, needs little introduction. It is the 28th-most populated city in
the United States and the largest city within the greater Mojave Desert. Las Vegas is an internationally renowned major
resort city, known primarily for its gambling, shopping, fine dining, entertainment, and nightlife. The Las Vegas Valley
serves as the leading financial, commercial, and cultural center for Nevada. The city bills itself as The Entertainment
Capital of the World and is famous for its mega casino–hotels and associated activities. Today, Las Vegas annually
ranks as one of the world's most visited tourist destinations.
McCarran International Airport (IATA: LAS, ICAO: KLAS) is the primary commercial airport serving Las Vega
Valley, a major metropolitan area in the U.S. state of Nevada. It is in Paradise, about 5 miles (8.0 km) south of Downtown
Las Vegas. The airport is owned by Clark County and operated by the Clark County Department of Aviation. It is
named after the late U.S. Senator Pat McCarran, a member of the Democratic Party who contributed to the development
of aviation both in Las Vegas and on a national scale. LAS covers 2,800 acres (11.3 km2) of land.
The airport was built in 1942 and opened to commercial flights in 1948.
It has undergone significant expansion
since then and has employed various innovative technologies, such as common-use facilities. The airport consists of
four runways and two passenger terminals: Terminal 1 and Terminal 3. Terminal 1 is composed of four concourses,
namely the A, B, C, and D Gates; Terminal 3 contains the E Gates. A people mover system is in place between the postsecurity
area of Terminal 1 and the C and D Gates, as well as between the D Gates and Terminal 3. East of the passenger
terminals is the Marnell Air Cargo Center, and on the west side of the airports are facilities for fixed-base operators
and helicopter companies. It is the 30th busiest airport in the world by passenger traffic and the 8th busiest by aircraft
movements. The airport has non-stop air service to destinations in North America, Europe, and Asia.
The aerial approach to Las Vegas is truly spectacular, offering the contrast of desert with a sudden metropolis,
unrivalled for sheer size and glamour, even in daylight, although it’s even more spectacular at night.
It is noteworrthy that McCarran is the home of Janet Airlines, a highly classified fleet of passenger aircraft
operated for the United States Department of the Air Force as an employee shuttle to transport military and contractor
employees. The airline mainly serves the Nevada National Security Site (most notably Area 51 and the Tonopah Test
Range), from a private terminal at McCarran International Airport.
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