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Rapid Growth Prompts Decision to Expand New North Terminal - 4/6/2017 -

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At the March meeting of the New Orleans Aviation Board (NOAB), members officially voted to expand the new north terminal facility from the planned 30 gates to 35 gates. The decision to begin construction on a five-gate expansion now was made due to the extraordinary passenger growth experienced at Armstrong International in the last several years and the expected future growth indicated by our airline partners.

Travel demand to New Orleans is steadily increasing, bringing opportunities for airlines to launch new routes and add more service. Today, Armstrong International serves 58 non-stop destinations on 17 airlines. Last year, the airport served an all-time record 11.1 million passengers and continues to see new international and domestic flights. New international service includes non-stop service to London-Heathrow with British Airways, which began on March 27, 2017, and seasonal service to Frankfurt, Germany, with Condor launching on May 3, 2017. Other international destinations include Cancun, Mexico; Panama City, Panama; Punta Cana, Dominican Republic; Toronto, Canada; and San Pedro Sula, Honduras. New domestic flights with Southwest Airlines begin April 30, 2017, with seasonal, twice-weekly service to Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, and Columbus, Ohio. Spirit Airlines will also begin service to Cleveland, Ohio; Baltimore/Washington, DC; and Orlando, Florida, in May. Then in September, Alaska Airlines, together with Virgin America, will begin daily, non-stop flights from New Orleans to San Francisco. This enplanement and departure growth is much higher than forecasts predicted at the start of planning for the North Terminal Project. Therefore, additional gates are necessary earlier than originally anticipated.

The new North Terminal program including the five-gate expansion will cost $993 million and measure approximately 972,000 square feet. The new terminal will have more than 3,400 parking spots including a 2,190-car parking garage and surrounding surface lots, a central utility plant, and a ground transportation staging area that will be independent of the parking facility. The concessions program in the new terminal will feature a mix of great national brands and local concepts that are sure to provide something for every traveler. Proposals from Delaware North-Chase Catering and Concessions joint venture and HMS Host-Coaxum Enterprises-Kaleidoscope Strategies joint venture were officially approved on March 23, 2017, by the New Orleans City Council. Combined, these programs host a total of nine James Beard Foundation recognized chefs and restaurants.

The Delaware North-Chase Catering joint venture delivers local favorites like MoPho and Pizza Domenica and inspired restaurants like Leah’s Kitchen, named in honor of the legendary Leah Chase, and Folse Market by Chef John Folse. The HMS Host joint venture with partners Coaxum Enterprises and Kaleidoscope Strategies provides national chains like Starbucks, Burger King, and Panda Express while still including New Orleans flair with Mondo by Susan Spicer, Cure cocktails, and more.

Although the project remains on schedule, the Board approved the recommendation to open the entire facility in February 2019 when the expansion is scheduled for completion. This will prevent any issue with logistics that may have been caused with two separate opening dates. More developments with our North Terminal Project are coming soon. Two retail operators will be selected by a committee for the program in the North Terminal on April 18, 2017. For more information about the project and monthly updates, please visit our website at

Mark Reis, Interim Director of Aviation for Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport may be reached at Check your local listings for the air time of the Armstrong International Airport 30 minute television program, "Airport Alive” or view it on the airport website,, by clicking on the "Airport Alive” link on the "News and Stats” page. You can now follow the airport on and Twitter @NO_Airport. To find out how to be a volunteer at the airport, click on "Ambassador” on the airport’s website homepage.


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