Peoria Airport Expansion Moves Forward

By Emily West

July 15, 2010 Updated Apr 23, 2008 at 6:56 PM CDT

Even with uncertainty in the airline industry, the Greater Peoria Regional Airport is going forward with its expansion plans.

New diagrams being presented to the Airport Authority Board today indicate what a new terminal will look like in two years.

It will be a facility with high-ceilings and lots of glass to let in natural light.

While the new $60 million terminal will be slightly smaller than the current facility, the number of slots available for planes increases from eight to 11.

Airport Director Ken Spirito said, "The new terminal building is going to be a quantum leap for Peoria. The existing building has many challenges for efficiency, challenges to operate. We're certainly going to correct those with the new building."

Currently construction is underway for a new rental car facility.

The current car rental space will be razed to make way for the new terminal.

Spirito said, "It's a needed project. We're very excited to move forward and build a new terminal."

He says the current terminal provides a number of challenges including efficiency. He also says those problems will be fixed and there will even be more room for additional planes... which may seem the opposite of what should be done in regards to the current state of the airline industry.

The new terminal building will be on top of where the existing rental car facility is today.

Construction crews are starting to work on the area where the new rental car facility will be located. For across to the airport... this section of the road will be opened... reconnecting it to Maxwell Road.

The rental facility will be relocated in September.

"We don't anticipate additional costs being passed on to the customer. User fees are what they are based on the costs of the operating facility."

So the construction project moves forward, hoping by the time it is complete in 2010 the airline industry will be having better times.

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