CASCADE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — State Rep. Hillary Scholten, D-Grand Rapids, toured the soon-to-be opened Concourse A expansion Thursday at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport.
“It’s so clear that the leadership at the airport has taken great pains to make sure this is a welcoming, truly West Michigan experience when folks are arriving at this newly expanded concourse,” she said.
The $110 million project is expected to be complete in June. It will add eight additional gates and a VIP lounge, as well as the new food vendors.
Airport officials said passenger traffic through Ford Airport is back to pre-pandemic levels, which is seven years ahead of when they were expecting a full return.
“We don’t need more runways because the number of aircraft haven’t increased, however, the aircraft have gotten larger,” said Casey Ries, director of engineering and planning.
Scholten, who sits on the Transportation and Infrastructure committee, said the expansion is overdue.
“We know that in order to expand aviation, we need to ensure that there is critical oversight and safety and security of the passengers and the crew,” she said.
Two additional projects are planned for the airport, including the relocation of the air traffic control tower to the east side of the airfield.
“What that does is allows line of sight constraints to be eliminated and the airport to expand up as we grow,” Ries said.