Boise’s Airport is bustling, with the number of passengers increasing by nearly 50% in just the last six years.
As BoiseDev was the first to report in September of 2018, the airport is planning a number of changes and expansion that will have a big impact on the traveling public.
“It’s a huge project and we are at the very beginning of it,” Boise Airport Director Rebecca Hupp said during a presentation to Boise’s city council Tuesday.
The full plan is extensive, as we outlined before. Hupp detailed for City Council what folks will see over the next five years – starting this summer.
Boise airport expansion in the near-term
Starting this summer, crews will start work to remove an Idaho Transportation Department hangar near the public parking garages.
“The area just to the north of that is where we have rental cars and employee parking – and to do the long-term projects for the airport, we need to relocate that hangar,” Hupp said.
Once it’s complete, a series of other projects will start that will be more public-facing.
“These projects are sequential and have to happen in a specific order so that we can accomplish them,” she said.
A new parking garage just to the northwest of the airport terminal in the area where the ITD Hangar currently sits will include a new rental car lobby and parking for rental cars, as well as a covered walkway connecting it to the terminal.
“It will be close in so passengers don’t have to get on a bus to get their rental cars,” Hupp said.
A new concourse
With passenger growth, Hupp said they want to start moving on a new concourse to add more spots for planes to park.
It will start with six gates, three for full-size jets and three for regional planes.
“The departure lounges will be slightly larger because the aircraft we are seeing will be larger,” Hupp said.
Once work on Concourse A wraps, crews will get to work on revamping and expanding Concourse B.
Airport staff is also evaluating upgrades to the security checkpoint area.
“That is a pinch point and congestion point,” Hupp said, citing increased passenger loads and future gate expansion.
Updates to employee parking and visitor parking are also in the offing.
The current parking exit gates could also get an upgrade.
“If we are adding to the parking garage, we need to update that and reconfigure that so it has better access. It is quite old,” she said.
Paying for it all
Hupp estimates the upgrades will cost $150-million to $200-million. She stressed during the public meeting that general local tax dollars will not be used.
“This is a pretty aggressive capital improvement program,” she said. “No general fund dollars are used to develop the airport infrastructure.”
The individual projects will be paid with different funding sources, including general revenue bonds, passenger facility charges and airport revenue.