Local News

RDU Expansion Includes Terminal For Private Planes

Posted March 5, 2004

— Big changes are on the horizon at

Raleigh-Durham International Airport

.

Workers are putting the finishing touches on the new general aviation terminal. Set to open this spring, the 22,000-square-foot facility is the airport's first terminal exclusively for private and corporate jets.

"A lot of the businesses in our area do charter flights or have their own planes that they use for business purposes, so this is a growing trend and we know across the country that the general aviation area is growing," airport spokeswoman Mindy Hamlin said.

That demand is projected to increase as the economy improves. Each month, 4,500 general aviation flights take off and land at RDU International.

Mark Stanly learned to fly, in part, to avoid the hustle and bustle of commercial flights.

"The difference between flying commercially, there's no comparison," he said. "It's worth it just to fly my own plane and get there when I want and leave when I want. Time is money."

Plans for the new Terminal C are also moving along. The architect will unveil the new design for the terminal in two weeks.

"What passengers will see is an expanded ticketing area that moves people easily from ticketing to security checkpoint to the concourse," Hamlin said.

It is a gaze into the future of an airport that continues to outgrow itself.

The new terminal for corporate and private planes is not just for the jet set club. It will feature a new restaurant open to the public and an observation deck for anyone who wants to plane spot.

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