In our terminals, winter is one of our slower times every year. Fewer passengers typically travel during January and February than any other month.
But that doesn’t mean we’re sitting back twiddling our thumbs. We’re busy and making plans for a great year ahead.
Winter is our budget preparation season. More than crunching numbers, we’re putting great ideas into motion to ensure RDU remains a world-class airport.
As you know, 2014 was a big year for us with the opening of Terminal 1. That project marked the end of our big building campaign, but it doesn’t mean the end of projects here at RDU. So what lies ahead for the airport?
You won’t see many big projects with bulldozers and shovels. But, what you will see is us stepping up to bat for you, the traveler. We’re aiming to add destinations, secure funding to maintain our great facilities and planning for an even better future.
New International Service
Air service development will be a top priority. Each year, more than 1.5 million passengers travel between RDU and international destinations. This tells us that we have the demand needed to support an additional international flight.
We know it’s important, and our community knows it’s important. In December, the Regional Transportation Alliance announced a new program called the Air Service Advancement Program. ASAP supports the region’s efforts to attract new international air service. To date, 28 local businesses and community organizations have made a commitment to the ASAP program.
Our efforts will also be focused on Congress, like most airports in the U.S. This year, Congress takes up the FAA Reauthorization Bill, which is an opportunity to improve airports’ ability to generate money needed to support important infrastructure projects. This is critical to ensuring that you have world-class facilities at RDU for years to come.
Behind-the-scenes, we’ve been preparing for this new era.
We recently kicked off the early stages of our master planning process. In 2015, our team will lay out a master plan that will detail the major projects the airport will undertake over the next 20 to 25 years. It is during this process that we will take a closer look at the property the airport owns and identify ways that we may develop land that will not be needed for aeronautical purposes.
We are committed to an inclusive process and invite our community to join us as we map the way forward.
Major construction of new facilities is complete for the moment. A new funding environment is here. Opportunities to improve air service and plan for the future are upon us, and we have a community that is joining us on the path forward. It’s going to be a great year.