SLC’s Sign (Shop) of the Times

When Cory Lyman gets to work each morning, he knows that anything can come his way but has one main priority: safety.

Cory Lyman, Doug Worthen and Bruce Whitely of the SLCDA Sign Shop

“The first thing I think about is safety,” Cory said. “If someone is going to get hurt because there’s not a sign telling them where to go, or if a snowplow takes out a sign on the airfield, or anything that affects a passenger or the operations of the airport, these are my top priorities.”

As Salt Lake City International Airport’s (SLC) Sign Shop supervisor, Cory manages a staff of two and together they make all the printed magic happen at the airport.

One of the most challenging projects Cory and his staff have handled occurred just last year when SLC renamed its A and B concourses G and F. The reason for the

renaming was part of the transition to The New SLC Airport. When the first phase of The New SLC opens in 2020, the new concourses will be named A and B, so concourses in the existing facilities needed to be renamed in advance to avoid confusion.


Renaming the concourses was no small undertaking and took a tremendous amount of coordination, collaboration and strategic vision to pull off. It involved several departments and much more than simply switching over the internal signage to reflect the names of the new concourses—the airfield was repainted, legends on the airfield were remade and arrival and departure screens updated. Additionally, pilots were given about 90 days advanced notice about the forthcoming change.

“When we did the A to G switchover, we learned a lot—it took us about four hours to switch,” Cory said.  “When we did the B to F change a few months later, it was more than triple the amount of work, but we were done in an hour and a half.“

As a jacks-of-all-trades, the sign shop stays extremely busy. From making internal and external wayfinding signs to maintaining the vitally important legends on the runways, SLC’s sign shop has it covered.

What the sign shop does today is markedly different than when Cory first started working at the airport in 2008. With a lot of hard work and a collaborative nature, he’s turned it in to more than a basic sign shop and his team has proven their skill and professionalism.

“With all of the departments aware of what we can do, they don’t have to outsource, which is exactly how we like it,” Cory said. “We’re saving money, providing a faster turn-around and giving quality results.”