Denver International Airport has outgrown its 107 gates, officials argue.
DIA set passenger traffic records last year – 58.3 million traveled through the airport’s gates last year. To bridge that surging traffic, airport officials have proposed a nearly $1.5 billion project to add 39 gates across DIA’s three concourses, the Denver Business Journal reports.
Denver’s Business, Arts, Workforce and Aeronautical Services Committee is slated to review four five-year contracts Wednesday afternoon. The contracts would cover design and construction of the new passenger gates. If OK’d in committee, the contracts could be considered by the full City Council by mid-November. Airport officials hope to have the gates completed by 2021.
DIA officials argue the airport must expand to meet climbing passenger traffic. Airport leaders had previously noted plans to add anywhere from 26 to 56 new gates, according to the Business Journal.
When the airport first opened more than two decades ago, it was designed to accommodate 50 million passengers a year. But DIA passenger traffic has perpetually swelled, exceeding airport capacity last year.
Denver officials recently approved the $1.8 billion Great Hall Project to overhaul security screening checkpoints and concessions and boost the Jeppesen terminal’s capacity to 80 million passengers a year. Through a 34-year, private-public partnership with Spanish transportation infrastructure behemoth Ferrovial, the project was controversial, in part, because of the City Council’s loss of oversight of new concessions.
On Wednesday, the Denver committee will consider a $700 million contract with joint venture Turner-Flatiron and a $655 million contract with joint venture Holder-FCI for pre-construction and construction management, and two $65 million design and engineering contracts with HNTB Corporation and Jacobs Engineering Group, according to city documents.
DIA’s concourses were initially designed to allow for growth and additional gates, according to the airport. In 2014, five new gates were completed on DIA’s C concourse in a $46 million expansion project.