February Enplanements Up 8.8 Percent, Terminal 1 Gate Activation Postponed
The Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority’s Board of Directors met Thursday for its regular monthly meeting and to receive public comment on the airport’s Fiscal Year 2020-2021 budget. The new fiscal year begins April 1. The Authority is required by law to make board meetings and the required budget hearing open to the public.
More than 482,000 people boarded commercial flights at RDU in February, an 8.8 percent increase in enplanements over February 2019. However, that growth trend was stunted in March by travel restrictions to combat COVID-19, commonly referred to as coronavirus.
“The airport started the year strong with two consecutive months of passenger growth, yet the COVID-19 global health crisis has caused a sharp decline in air travel,” Authority President & CEO Michael Landguth said. “The Authority is taking proactive measures to protect the health and safety of everyone at the airport. While we are unable to speculate how long these impacts will last, the airport is financially stable and able to adapt to dynamic business circumstances.”
Information regarding the airport’s response to COVID-19 can be found at RDU.com/COVID19/
Budget Moves Forward: The Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority Board of Directors voted Thursday to approve the Fiscal Year 2020-2021 budget and business plan that will fund airport development to keep pace with growing regional demand for air service. Board members acknowledged the need for flexibility as the airport community responds to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The board also approved a motion directing the Authority to cut $95 million in Fiscal Year 2020-2021 capital projects and operational expenses in response to decreased airport revenue from the COVID-19 pandemic. The motion also delays the implementation of fee increases until at least July 1.
La Farm Bakery & Café: The board approved the conceptual design for La Farm Bakery & Café, a local concept opening in the Terminal 2 Marketplace in August or September of this year. The opening was accelerated from the initial projection of December 2020. With a direct view of the patio area, La Farm guests will enjoy an eye-catching bar featuring craft beers on tap and a wide selection of wines. Guests will enjoy the aroma of fresh baked bread from the signature Wenz oven and an array of baked goods.
Allegiant, Spirit Move to Terminal 1 Postponed: The Authority will postpone moving two popular ultra-low-cost carriers to Terminal 1. Allegiant and Spirit will remain in Terminal 2 until RDU activates two currently-dormant Terminal 1 gates – A3 and A4 – on June 1.