Metro-East News

Flights, passengers continue to increase at MidAmerica Airport

MidAmerica Airport’s latest parking lot expansion was completed about a week ago, just in time for additional flights that start this month, airport officials told St. Clair County Public Building commissioners on Thursday.

With the start of the Fort Lauderdale route, the airport is going to have 18 flights per week. The airport is scheduled to have 25 flights per week by the end of the month, said ​Dan Trapp, MidAmerica’s director of engineering and planning.

Last year’s peak flight schedule was 17 flights per week.

“That’s a pretty dramatic increase,” Trapp said.

Allegiant Air started a route to Fort Lauderdale on Wednesday, and is scheduled to start a route to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina later this month.

Trapp did not have sales figures for the new Allegiant routes.

Passenger boardings for April were up 61 percent compared to the same month in 2017, Trapp told members of the Public Building Commission.

Passenger boardings at the airport were up 45 percent in January, 25 percent in February, and 28 percent in March when compared to the same months in 2016.

The increased flights and passenger load come as multiple construction projects are ongoing at the airport, including an airfield shoulder rehab, the addition of a new service road, and rehabbing the passenger boarding bridges.

The latest parking lot expansion opened on Friday and added 443 spaces, bringing the airport to 1,281 spaces total, Trapp said.

“We anticipate it will fill very quickly, within the next couple of weeks,” Trapp said.

Joseph Bustos: 618-239-2451, @JoeBReporter