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FAA allocates US$970 million to upgrade and expand 114 U.S. airports

US$35 million will go to Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia, funding a portion of the construction of a 14-gate, 400,000 ft² terminal building
US$35 million will be awarded to Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia, funding a portion of the construction of a 14-gate, 400,000 ft² terminal building © Shutterstock

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is set to distribute US$970 million from President Biden’s Bipartisan Investing in America agenda to 114 airports across the country, covering 44 states and three territories. This announcement, part of the Administration’s Investing in America tour, fulfils President Biden’s commitment to rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure, lowering costs for families, creating jobs, and advancing opportunities for all Americans.

This latest funding aims to meet the growing demand for air travel and initiate projects to improve passenger experience, accessibility and sustainability while creating well-paying jobs. Investments include new baggage systems, larger security checkpoints, increased gate capacity, and modernisation of aging infrastructure throughout terminals and ground transportation. Additionally, nine grants will address the needs of aging air traffic control towers.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg stated, “Under this administration, we are doing more to improve the travel experience than ever before, from expanding consumer protections to modernizing physical infrastructure. These investments we’re announcing today, made possible by President Biden’s historic infrastructure package, will make it easier for passengers to get to and through airports, create jobs, and increase safety for all.”

FAA Associate Administrator for Airports, Shannetta R. Griffin, P.E., added, “Today’s funding not only helps modernise airports to meet the needs of travellers today and for years to come but also creates good-paying job opportunities in communities both large and small.”

These awards supplement the nearly US$2 billion for airport terminals announced over the past two years, with the majority of these terminal projects currently under construction.

Numerous grants include elements to build new or expanded terminal facilities. Examples include US$35 million to Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia, funding a portion of the construction of a 14-gate, 400,000 ft² terminal building with connections to the Aerotrain and Metrorail; US$20 million to Salt Lake City International Airport in Utah, funding a portion of the Concourse B terminal expansion, including 16 gates; and US$10 million to Hector International Airport in Fargo, North Dakota, funding a portion of the rehabilitation and expansion of the existing terminal.

Many grants also feature elements to enhance the passenger experience by improving security-screening areas, providing faster and more reliable baggage systems, and increasing accessibility for passengers with disabilities. Examples include US$40 million to Chicago O’Hare International Airport in Illinois, funding improvements to Terminal 3, such as increasing the central passenger corridor width and updating the baggage system; US$26.6 million to Denver International Airport in Colorado, funding a portion of the baggage handling system replacement to improve energy efficiency and increase capacity; US$8.6 million to Kahului Airport in Hawai‘i, funding the construction of a new two-story security screening checkpoint facility; US$7.5 million to Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport in Kentucky, funding a portion of the Terminal A security screening expansion project; US$2 million to Spokane International Airport in Washington, funding additional ticket counters, passenger boarding bridges, and various infrastructure upgrades; and US$1.5 million to Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport in Alaska, funding the installation of audio and visual monitors throughout the terminal.

Numerous grants will also enhance access to other modes of transportation or improve roadways. (£1.00 = US$1.26 at time of publication).

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