The first Next-Generation 737-900 for launch customer Alaska Airlines is undergoing final preparations leading to its scheduled delivery in Seattle this May. The 737-900 is the fourth and newest member of the Next-Generation 737 passenger airplane family. At 138 feet 2 inches, the 737-900 is the longest of the Next-Generation models, 8 feet 8 inches longer than the 737-800. The airplane carries 177 passengers in a two-class configuration (15 more than the 737-800) and 189 in a one-class configuration. The airplane features the lowest seat-mile operating cost of any of the Next-Generation 737 models, can cruise at 41,000 feet and has an advanced flight deck featuring the latest large flat panel display technology. Alaska Airlines is scheduled to take delivery of 11 Boeing 737-900s between May 2001 and April 2003. The airline initially will use the new planes to accommodate passenger growth on routes between Seattle and the cities of Anchorage, Alaska, Phoenix, Ariz., Las Vegas and Los Angeles.