Dulles Airport is starting construction of a new $580 million concourse for United Airlines.
The ground-breaking is imminent, Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority President and CEO Jack Potter told the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors at a October transportation committee meeting, reported by FFXNow.
The Tier-2 Concourse East project will add 400,000 sq. ft. to the existing C and D concourse. It’s 14 gates will replace Concourse A gates built in the 1990s that require passengers to use outdoor, covered walkways to get to their planes.
Construction is expected to be completed in 2026. Seven of the new concourse’s gates will be capable of accommodating larger planes for international flights. It will be connected to the airport’s underground Aerotrain system.
“I think it’s going to significantly improve the customer experience,” Potter said, noting that the C/D concourse has undersized rooms and lacks sufficient space for concessions. “That’s the two things we’re trying to drive on: we want capacity, but we also want to really make sure that we improve the customer experience.”
The MWAA says Dulles is serving more passengers from Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Europe than it was before the pandemic, and domestic travel has returned to 97% of 2019 levels.
Potter said Metro’s extension of the Silver Line through Dulles Airport has been a “win-win” for MWAA and Fairfax Count. The accompanying influx of development and businesses along the Dulles corridor feeds traffic at both of the D.C. area’s major airports.
“We are selling very, very strongly to international destinations and travelers that they can come into Dulles Airport and take transit to downtown (D.C.) and any other destination served by the Metro,” Potter said. “It is a very, very good selling point.”