Building on the $1.3 billion Infrastructure Deal at ’Hare, City Announces First Major Gate Expansion Since 1993
CHICAGO–(ENEWSPF)–February 7, 2016. Mayor Rahm Emanuel and American Airlines today announced that five new gates will be added to O’Hare International Airport by 2018, the first major expansion of gate capacity since Terminal 5 was built at O’Hare in 1993.
The agreement builds on the City’s recently announced $1.3 billion landmark infrastructure plan for O’Hare, which will help create thousands of jobs and improve the customer experience at the airport. The new gates represent the next step in Mayor Emanuel’s commitment to modernizing O’Hare for the 21st century. With this new deal, the additional gates – which will be located in Terminal 3 — will increase capacity at the airport, provide significant economic benefit to the city of Chicago, and improve on-time performance at O’Hare. The number of total gates at O’Hare will grow from 189 to 194 – representing not just the first major expansion of gate capacity at O’Hare since Terminal 5 was built in 1993, but also the first major domestic gate expansion since Terminal 1 was built in 1987. This announcement is part of the beginning of airport revitalization efforts, as Mayor Emanuel and the Chicago Department of Aviation will continue to discuss gate expansion with every airline carrier at O’Hare, as well as terminal modernization and improving transportation options to and from the airport.
“Chicago’s economic future is linked to the success and growth of O’Hare, and the steps we are taking are part of our long-term plan to bring the airport into the 21st century,” Mayor Emanuel said. “This agreement is a win for our city, our airline partners and most importantly, the thousands of passengers who rely on O’Hare on a daily basis. These new gates will help make O’Hare not only the busiest, but also the best airport in the world.”
“O’Hare airport is moving in to the 21st century with the addition of these gates,” Chicago Department of Aviation Commissioner Ginger S. Evans said. “Passengers will see fewer delays, shorter taxi times and an overall improved experience when flying to or from Chicago – which is our top priority at both O’Hare and Midway airports. I want to thank American Airlines for its forward-thinking approach, and its strong desire to improve operations and the customer experience here in Chicago, and around the world.”
“These new gates, in addition to the airfield improvements announced already, signify a major investment American is making in our customers and employees at O’Hare. Growing our footprint will allow us to grow our operation and better serve the Chicago community,” said Michael Minerva, vice president – government and airport affairs for American Airlines. “We’d like to thank Mayor Emanuel and Commissioner Evans for their continued leadership and dedication to improving the customer experience at O’Hare.”
American Airlines anticipates that the new gates will be completed by 2018, before Runway 9C-27C comes online in 2020. American Airlines will cover the cost of the project.
The historic deal announced last week helps pave the way for future investments at the airport, including gate expansion. The deal calls for a new runway (9C/27C), deicing pads, a new crossfield Taxiway system, and other critical airfield projects. The thousands of travelers who depend on O’Hare each day will see improved on-time performance and enhanced customer experience due to the increased capacity at the airport and the new projects, like gate expansion, that the city will be able to pursue as a result of the landmark deal.