Greater Orlando Aviation Authority approves massive expansion of Orlando International Airport

Have you ever seen the airport this empty?
Have you ever seen the airport this empty?

Have you ever seen the airport this empty?

The Greater Orlando Aviation Authority just approved plans to make the Orlando International Airport – already an anxiety-inducing snarl of tourists and TSA lines – even busier. This morning the board says it "set the wheels in motion" to increase the airport's capacity from 24 million passengers per year (though, according to airport stats, it currently hosts 35 million per year – no wonder it's always so busy) to 45 million. They say the $1.1 billion improvement project will include upgrades to ground transportation, baggage and ticketing, as well as an "automated people over" complex that'll support "future multi-modal travel connections" – it'll connect to a new garage, to start, though this January story from WMFE makes some noise about a possible rail connection to Miami. Also: four new international gates.

The goal, says the GOAA, is to enhance the "Orlando Experience," which is how the OIA refers to the experience of being while at the airport: Orlando International Airport: The Orlando Experience.

Once the Orlando Experience reaches its 45 million passenger per year mark, the GOAA is hoping to build a new terminal.

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