Transformation project announced for Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport

New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo, has announced a $22 million project to transform the Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport as part of the Upstate Airport Economic Development and Revitalisation Competition.

The airport, in the Finger Lakes region of New York, currently serves Delta, American Airlines and United with direct routes to Philadelphia, Detroit and Newark.

In 2016 the airport saw enplanements grow 15% in a rise that is expected to continue in the future. To accommodate this growth, the project will expand the terminal which, along with a new customs facility, will expand the airport by nearly 50%.

The expanded terminal will provide more seating, six new gates, three additional passenger bridges and new retail opportunities, with work expected to be completed in 2019.

Governor Cuomo said: “Airports are gateways to our regions, and this project will transform Ithaca Tompkins Airport into a modern, state-of-the-art facility to drive tourism and economic development and help keep the Southern Tier Soaring.”

Currently, travellers have to stop at other airports before arriving in Ithaca to clear US customs, but once the project is completed, a new customs facility will allow international aircraft to fly directly to the airport, which sees more than 22,000 international travellers annually.

Facility upgrades will include security enhancements such as updating TSA baggage screening to be compliant with post-9/11 security requirements and adding another line for passenger security screening to alleviate wait times, reconfiguration of the security checkpoint and relocation of TSA office space as part of a 7,500-square-foot expansion of the passenger hold room.

The airport will also see a reconfiguration of airline office space and expansion of baggage screening space as part of a 2,500-square-foot addition on the East side.

Three new passenger boarding bridges will be added to accommodate jet aircraft and additional services, and the addition of 1,700-square-feet of space at the main entrance as well as an expanded ticket counter will improve passenger circulation and provide more room for ticket lines. The airport is also to gain a 5,000-square-foot Federal Customs Facility.

Upgrades will also include high-speed Wi-Fi, Bluetooth connectivity and additional charging ports and outlets.

The $22 million project to revitalise and expand the Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport is being supported with $14.2 million in state funding as part of the Upstate Airport Economic Development and Revitalisation Competition.

As part of the redevelopment of the airport, the County will develop a 53-acre Airport Logisitics Park on the airport property which will feature a State Department of Transportation maintenance facility, moved from the Cayuga Inlet.

“The regional aviation industry has an enormously positive economic impact across the local economy,” said senator Tom O’Mara.

Our regional airports create jobs, make us more competitive, and deliver economic growth and other critical opportunities to communities across the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions. These smart investments in aviation infrastructure will lead to vital short- and long-term benefits, including in Tompkins County where this transformation of the Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport and the relocation of the state Department of Transportation will greatly benefit the county and the city in numerous ways.

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