Austin airport breaks passenger record in 2015


Austin-Bergstrom International Airport shattered its all-time passenger record in 2015.

The airport said Monday it saw nearly 12 million passengers last year, an 11 percent jump from 2014, when ABIA set its previous record with 10.7 million travelers.

The 2015 total of 11.9 million passengers gave the airport a fifth consecutive year of record traffic, airport officials said. That total counts both passengers flying into and out of the airport.

“We have grown from 9.1 million annual passengers in 2011 to 11.9 passengers now,” airport spokesman Jim Halbrook said. “We are really reflective of the growth in Austin and the region overall and the economy.”

The airport’s facilities have grown along with the passenger traffic, as ABIA has added an expanded U.S. Customs processing center, rental car facility and checkpoint area.

The Terminal East Infill project added about 56,700 square feet to the terminal and renovated another 17,000 square feet of the existing airport space. The project connected the airport’s east ticket lobby and east concourse and added an expanded, security screening checkpoint for departing passengers.

In October, the airport added a new five-level, 1.6 million square foot garage complex that included a newly expanded rental car facility and 800 visitor parking spots on the ground floor. A new U.S. Customs processing area was added in December 2014.

The growth isn’t done yet: the airport will see construction begin this year on a nine-gate terminal expansion and the addition of a new Hyatt Place hotel. Late this year, a new parking facility with 2,000 spaces and pet boarding is expected to be added on site.

“As the region continues growing, we have begun a lot of construction projects to help accommodate the growth we are experiencing and plan for future growth,” Halbrook said.

Last year’s busiest day was on Oct. 26, the day after Austin’s Formula 1 race. That day, 23,164 travelers passed through security.

Part of what fueled the increase in passenger traffic was several new flight routes. In 2015, ABIA added eight nonstops and new, additional service for six existing nonstop routes.

The airport this summer is also scheduled to add a new nonstop to Frankfurt, Germany, with Condor Airlines.

Airport officials said the increased traffic also meant plenty of eats, entertainment and shopping for travelers, as 2015 travelers enjoyed 65.5 tons of brisket, 693,375 breakfast tacos, 1,190 live music performances — and bought 51,278 “Keep Austin Weird” t-shirts at the airport.

“What you also see through some of these figures is, people really enjoy this airport,” Halbrook said.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Business

Visa joins other credit cards in getting rid of signature requirement
Visa joins other credit cards in getting rid of signature requirement

The days of signing the receipt after a credit card purchase are numbered. Visa, the largest U.S. credit card issuer, became the last of the major credit card companies to announce its plan to make signatures optional. Visa announced it will get rid of its signature requirement for cards with EMV chips starting in April. EMV — which stands for...
A sampling of then newest technologies being rolled out for consumers
A sampling of then newest technologies being rolled out for consumers

With 2.754 million square feet of showroom floor space just about everything imaginable was on display at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. It’s an impossible task to see it all but here’s a sampling of new, useful products of the thousand or so I saw on display, ——— Hanwha Techwin America showed off the...
Wearables get smaller and smarter
Wearables get smaller and smarter

First there were fitness wearables. Then the focus turned to fashionable wearables. The latest evolution, seen throughout this year’s CES in Las Vegas: more functional, futuristic — and sometimes far-fetched — wearables. Wrist-worn wearables were a huge hit at the trade show four years ago, as tech makers showed off fitness trackers...
AI programs beat humans in a Stanford reading test
AI programs beat humans in a Stanford reading test

First, they beat us at chess. Then it was Go. Now it’s basic reading comprehension. The robots are coming. Two artificial intelligence programs created by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba and Microsoft beat humans on a Stanford University reading comprehension test, Alibaba said recently. Alibaba took the honors as creator of the first program...
‘Gorogoa’ is as much a work of art as it is a puzzle game
‘Gorogoa’ is as much a work of art as it is a puzzle game

Part of what makes a good puzzle game is the inevitable “ah-ha” moment, the sense of accomplishment you get as you fit all the pieces together. “Gorogoa” is replete with these satisfying moments, enhanced by gorgeous hand-drawn visuals that pull you into its surreal world. “Gorogoa” is a tile-based puzzle game developed...
More Stories