Miami-Dade Aviation Department officials hosted a groundbreaking ceremony on October 31 to celebrate the beginning of Miami International Airport’s Central Base Modification and Expansion Project, which will upgrade 34.1 acres (13.8ha) of asphalt and concrete pavement originally built in the 1960s that is now used for aircraft parking and movement near MIA’s Concourse D.
The airport said the rehabilitated space, scheduled for completion by December 2022, will better support larger aircraft, maximise aircraft parking locations, improve the area’s stormwater and lighting, and pave the way for passenger growth at MIA.
Lester Sola, MIA director and CEO, commented: “This is the first of many groundbreakings we will be hosting in the coming months and years, as we move forward with our new capital improvement programme. MIA grew by one million passengers in 2018 and is on track for another record-breaking year in 2019, which makes modernisation projects like the Central Base renovation all the more essential to accommodating our growth and maximising our efficiency.”
The Central Base project has a construction cost of $76.2 million; 75% of which is being funded by the Federal Aviation Administration and 50% of the remaining cost being funded by the Florida Department of Transportation.
The Central Base gate is part of MIA’s $5 billion, airport-wide capital improvement program, which will enable it to handle a projected 77 million travellers and more than four million tons of freight projected by the year 2040.