Add Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport to the growing list of flight facilities growing by leaps and bounds. DFW and American Airlines have announced plans to develop a sixth terminal; in total, the airport is preparing to invest $3 billion to $3.5 billion in improvements, including the construction of Terminal F, which will have space for up to 24 gates, and enhancements to Terminal C.
Design work for the new facility will begin immediately. DFW and American finalized the details as part of a new lease agreement with airlines currently being negotiated. The funds are expected to come from bonds that will be repaid through carrier rates and charges over the life of the bonds.
"[This] sets the stage for DFW Airport's next 50 years," said Sean Donohue, CEO of the airport, in a statement. "The new Terminal F and the expansion that could follow will provide the region with the growth it needs to compete with international business centers. The airport is growing faster than ever, and it needs to keep pace with the Dallas/Fort Worth economy to provide jobs and connections for businesses and families."
"This is an exciting day for American and our more than 31,000 team members who call Dallas/Fort Worth home," added American Airlines chairman and CEO Doug Parker. "DFW is American's largest hub and a central gateway to our extensive international and domestic network. The plans we're announcing will allow for the continued growth of DFW and ensure the airport remains a premier gateway for American for many more years to come."
Terminal C, which will undergo a renovation, opened in 1974 as one of the airport's first facilities. The aim is to improve the passenger experience there, bringing the space in line with Terminals A, B and E, where renovations were completed in 2018. That work redesigned the check-in areas, enlarged the security checkpoints, expanded concessions spaces, and improved lighting and flooring.
DFW welcomed a record 69 million customers in 2018, and the airport anticipates more passengers and air service to be added in the next two years than in the past two decades. Also last year, DFW announced service to 28 new destinations, giving it a larger domestic footprint than any other U.S. airport. Customers have access to more than 60 international destinations from DFW, as well, with double the number of European destinations and frequencies than were available in 2015.
Over the past several years, American has expanded its DFW routes, and by June 2019 the airline will operate more than 900 daily flights from DFW. In total, customers have access to more than 230 nonstop destinations on American from the airport.
A 2015 economic-impact study said DFW Airport contributes more than $37 billion to the local economy. In 2018, DFW Airport awarded more than $150 million in contracts to small, women- and minority-owned businesses, and concessions agreements generated more than $155 million in revenues for disadvantaged businesses, where socially and economically disadvantaged individuals own part of the operation and control management and daily business operations.