DFW Airport and American Airlines have announced plans for a sixth terminal as part of nearly $5 billion in planned improvements at the world’s second-busiest passenger airport. The airport and Fort Worth-based airline signed a new 10-year Use and Lease Agreement, which includes pre-approved capital investments, including the construction of Terminal F, the renovation of Terminal C, and other modernization projects.
Sean Donohue, the CEO of DFW airport, said that the Use and Lease Agreement creates a predictable and equitable business model for DFW Airport, and it underscores the airport and its airline partner’s commitment to providing passengers with the best possible travel experience.
The partners announced plans in 2019 to spend $3.5 billion on constructing a 24-gate new terminal. Still, the pandemic and low air travel demand put the project on hold. However, with air travel demand climbing again, there is confidence to resume modified expansion plans. Instead of 24 gates, the partners are now planning a 15-gate concourse and allocating $1.63 billion to the terminal project.
Terminal F will be developed on the southwest side of the airport adjacent to the airport’s existing Express South parking lot. The terminal will not follow the crescent shape of the airport’s other five terminals but will instead be a rectangle with gates on two sides of the building.
AA and DFW also plan to spend another $3.2 billion on other improvements, including renovations and expansion for new gates at Terminals A and C, along with other modernization projects around the airport. They will spend an estimated $2.72 billion on terminal improvements, including “a significant upgrade to roadways and terminal access.”
American Airlines has about 800 daily flights out of DFW to more than 240 destinations in more than 25 countries. The airline carries about 85% of the passenger traffic at the airport and about two-thirds of the carrier’s customers connect through the airport.
The extension of the Use and Lease Agreement is good news for North Texas, with American’s total economic impact in Texas being over $42.7 billion annually, and the airline directly employing more than 36,000 team members across the state. Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker and Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson called the new agreement an important step to ensure the region remains well-positioned to thrive in the future.