Next decade to bring FedEx expansion, more tech, international flights
INDIANAPOLIS, IN, 2018-Nov-09 — /Travel PR News/ — The Indianapolis International Airport (IND) marks an historical milestone today (11/07/18) as the Colonel H. Weir Cook Terminal, which opened in 2008, celebrates its 10-year anniversary.
The terminal, described as “new, bright and beautiful” recently by Travel + Leisure Magazine readers, started as an idea sketched on a napkin in 1975. Today, it’s recognized as the best airport of its class in North America, accommodating more than 8.7 million travelers annually, and ranking among the 10 best-connected medium-size airports in the United States.
Mario Rodriguez, executive director of the Indianapolis Airport Authority, said the terminal’s success is due to decades of expert forethought, talented and diverse businesses, community support, and the more than 22,000 people that help support the airport operating each day.
“We’ve come a long way over the past 10 years,” said Rodriguez. “We now have direct flights to nearly every major market on the West coast, a nonstop transatlantic flight to Paris, $20 million of investment pledged from the state to encourage more international routes, and we annually contribute an economic impact to the tune of more than $5 billion.”
The terminal also became the first LEED certified airport in the United States, established the largest electric airport shuttle bus fleet in the nation, and is home to the largest solar farm on airport property anywhere in the world.
The IAA’s World Connect @ IND land use initiative is another example of how airports can deliver public value to their communities. World Connect includes the largest airport-development site in the United States, with seven parcels of land that are immediately shovel ready, many with airside access, and onsite or adjacent to the top airport in North America.
The recent announcement that Infosys will establish its U.S. training headquarters near where the former terminal stood, and create thousands of new jobs as a result, is a direct reflection of the IAA’s commitment to building public value through the airport as a community asset and an economic engine.
As the IAA looks ahead to the next 10 years, Rodriguez said Hoosiers should plan to see continued advances in both customer service and economic contribution.
“Over the next few years, we’re going to see the FedEx expansion bring tremendous growth to the airport, and include a total combined investment of nearly $2 billion from the IAA and FedEx, surpassing the $1.1 billion it cost for the Midfield terminal project,” said Rodriguez.
In addition to targeting more routes into international markets, such as possibly Mexico City, Rodriguez said in the near-term passengers will see a significant change inside the terminal when it comes to restaurants and retail that reflects the local flavor of Indianapolis.
In addition, the Indy airport and its airline partners will be adding more customer-friendly technology, such as more charging stations and self bag-tag kiosks, and possibly tech that allows passengers to order food right at the gate or the infrastructure for autonomous vehicles.
Rodriguez, along with Mayor Hogsett, Governor Eric Holcomb, former Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson, former IAA Board President Ambassador Randall Tobias and past and present IAA board officers and airport officials will gather tonight at a private event to commemorate the terminal’s journey from being a mere concept on a napkin in 1975, to the shining example other airports around the world strive to imitate today.
Click here for a media kit, including B-roll of the interior and exterior of the terminal, anniversary logos, still photos of the terminal and leadership headshots.
Source: Indianapolis Airport Authority