The Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport’s CEO expects passenger traffic to continue on an upward climb as the first five months of 2023 hit a 15% increase over the same time period in 2022.
The 12-month period leading through May 2023 saw 4.12 million passengers at the airport. Just during the month of May, the airport had 342,837 passengers, which was 3% more than May 2022.
“As we enter the summer season, we continue to see strong travel demand at our airport,” Rick Piccolo, president and CEO, says in a release. “Future airline flight schedules show additional seats and flight availability through the remaining calendar year. With COVID now behind us, and passengers eager to travel, we expect our passenger counts to maintain a positive trajectory for the foreseeable future.”
In response to the growth in traffic, SRQ has been working on a $73 million five-gate terminal expansion, which broke ground in March. Also included in the expansion plans are a new cell phone waiting lot, ground transportation pick-up area, baggage screening system and additional paved parking areas.
The new terminal is connected to the east end of the ticket wing and will add 75,300 square feet to the airport. The expansion includes a four-lane security checkpoint and five boarding hold rooms with enough room for 970 seats.