Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport Debuts New Terminal in Time for Spring Travel Season

Article originally posted on KTAR News on February 21, 2024

A look inside the South Concourse terminal expansion at Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport.

After 18 months of construction, Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport’s terminal expansion project is complete in time for the spring travel season.

Officials and dignitaries – including White House advisor Tom Perez, members of Congress and East Valley mayors — participated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony Tuesday at the airport’s new South Concourse.

The 30,000-square-foot building, which replaces a 14-year-old temporary structure, has five permanent gates. The new facility is connected to the airport’s ticket counters and security checkpoint by a glass pedestrian walkway.

The project – which includes a tech lounge, restaurants and retail space — is energy efficient and complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“The new South Concourse provides additional gates and capacity just in time to welcome hundreds of thousands of sun-seeking spring travelers to Arizona. It also positions Gateway Airport for continued passenger growth in the future,” J. Brian O’Neill, the airport’s CEO and executive director, said in a press release Wednesday.

About half of the $28 million project was paid for with a $14.4 million federal grant via the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

“Completing construction of the Gateway Airport expansion while working airside in a fully operational airport over the past year and a half without any recordable safety incidents is an accomplishment our team is tremendously proud of,” Thomas Assante, project director for general contractor McCarthy Building Companies, said in the release.

“We’re eager for airport passengers to experience the new facility and have a streamlined, uncomplicated travel experience while enjoying the new amenities offered by the modernized terminal addition.”

How has Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport grown over the years?

Gateway brought commercial passenger service to southeast Mesa in 2007 and set annual traffic records each of the last two years.

The airport’s primary carrier is Allegiant Air, which provides nonstop service to 44 destinations. Sun Country Airlines operates one route at Gateway.

To accommodate growth, the airport opened the John S. McCain III Air Traffic Control Tower in October 2022. The tower stands 199 feet tall and provides twice as much space for air traffic controllers as the structure it replaced.