Planning for the future
Construction of the 30,000-SF terminal expansion will begin this fall
Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport (Airport, Gateway Airport) in Mesa, Arizona is one of the fastest-growing commercial service airports in the country. Since the start of commercial passenger service in 2007, Gateway Airport
has grown to welcome nearly two million passengers annually. The Airport is currently served by five domestic and international airlines offering nonstop service to over 60 popular destinations in the U.S. and Canada. According
to a 2021 economic impact study conducted by the Arizona Department of Transportation, Gateway Airport creates 10,224 jobs and has a $1.8 billion annual economic contribution to the region.
When commercial passenger service began at Gateway Airport in 2007, ticketing, security screening, arrivals and departures, and baggage claim functions were all conducted within a 24,000-SF former Air Force building. In 2008,
as Allegiant Air, Gateway Airport's largest air carrier, began to increase the frequency of its flights and add nonstop destinations, the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport Authority (PMGAA) Board of Directors purchased a portable
10,000-SF "temporary passenger terminal annex (Annex)" with four gates that would be used until a permanent structure could be constructed at a later date. The Annex was designed to serve as a short-term (7-10 years), stop-gap
solution to address Gateway Airport's dramatic growth in the early 2000s. The continued rapid growth of Gateway Airport required PMGAA to prioritize other Airport facility and infrastructure projects, delaying the replacement
of the Annex. After 14 years, the portable structure has outlived its useful life and requires frequent and expensive maintenance to keep it functioning.
In 2021, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) was passed and provided airports an opportunity to apply for grant funding to replace aging terminal facilities. Gateway Airport applied for, and was awarded, a $14.4-million grant.
This enables the Airport to move forward with a new five-gate, approximately 30,000-SF terminal addition with new retail/food/beverage concession and much-needed storage space and airline support offices. This new facility
accomplishes all eight stated goals and criteria in the BIL Airport Terminal Modernization Program. These eight criteria include:
- Increased Capacity and Passenger Access
- Replacing Aging Infrastructure
- Achieving Compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Expanding Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities
- Improving Airport Access for Historically Disadvantaged Populations
- Improving Energy Efficiency
- Improving Airfield Safety Through Terminal Relocation
- Encouraging Actual and Potential Competition
- Good Paying Jobs