The Greater Orlando Aviation Authority (GOAA) Board on Wednesday approved a $1.1 billion measure that would nearly double Orlando International Airport's passenger capacity. The board voted unanimously in favor of the plan.
The airport was originally designed to accommodate 24 million travelers annually, but the approved expansion plans will increase the capacity of the airport's current terminal to 45 million passengers per year.
Major elements of the project include:
The $470 million South Airport APM Complex will support future multi-modal travel connections, including All Aboard Florida, and enhance current North Terminal capacity by providing a direct connection to the South Terminal parking garage with a people mover.
"We had five airlines that objected to this project," said GOAA Executive Director Phil Brown. "This $470 million is not all funded by passenger facility charges. They objected to the people mover from the North Terminal down to the South Terminal and car requisition."
Brown noted that eight airlines supported the construction on these projects, which is expected to begin in 2014 and conclude in 2017.
"Once we hit the trigger of 40 million annual passengers and now 2 million annual arriving international passengers, we'll start the final design and construction of phase one of the South Terminal project, which will be a new terminal," said Brown.
Though the board made a big point of the fact they would not move forward with spending the entire $1.1 billion without the demand being proven first, it's also worth noting that the $510 million in enhancements to the North Terminal is happening regardless. The board says that need has already been triggered.
Funding sources include both state and federal grants, passenger facility charges, and general airport revenue.
FOX 35's Tracy Jacim contributed to this report.