More Parking, Added Concessions: $250M Upgrade Planned for Midway Airport

Chicago's Midway Airport is about to get a major upgrade with changes that aim to fix some of the many concerns from travelers.

Officials announced an expansion plan for the airport Thursday which will feature an expansion of concession facilities, security checkpoints and the terminal parking garage.

The project is expected to address "concerns that have been raised bby business travelers and tourists for years."

"I guess you could always do more concessions, the parking outside, the parking could be a little better," said traveler Clarence Hicks.

Under the project, concessions areas, stores, and restaurants will be renovated and shopping, dining, lounge facilities, spa services, and medical services will be added. The expansion will feature a new 80,000-square-foot security hall and four levels and 1,400 parking spaces will be added to the terminal parking garage.

“These enhancements will create jobs for Chicago’s residents, provide an improved experience for travelers from the garage to the gate, and ensure that our world class city has two world class airports," Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement.

The project will be the largest investment at Midway in nearly a decade, valued at about $250 million, officials said.

It is expected to create 1,700 construction and concession jobs.  

“Our proposal will make Midway Airport more efficient and more customer friendly for years to come,” Aviation Commissioner Ginger S. Evans said in a statement. “In order for our airports, and our city, to thrive we need to remain competitive – and that’s what this plan will achieve.”

Officials plan to advance a proposal to the City Council for approval in the second quarter of 2016.

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