Sarasota Bradenton Airport Continues to Improve Services Here on the Suncoast
We are fortunate to have an amazing airport that services Sarasota and Manatee county travels. The Sarasota Bradenton Airport has continued to add services, improve facilities and expand the numerous direct flight options in the last few years. The changes continue at a pace to ensure the growing numbers of travelers passing through the airport enjoy the efficiencies of the more local airport when making reservations. In just the last ninety days, more good news regarding additional improvements at the airport has made headlines.
When the Biden Administration recently announced $1 billion in federal funding to help improve airport terminals across the country, $10 million of that was earmarked for Sarasota Bradenton Airport. This again put our Suncoast airport on the map due to the continued record-breaking number of travelers and the growing local economy. This federal money will provide the funding for five new gates and four security check lanes, replace the two chiller Central Energy Plant and improve an existing concourse.
The airport is getting this money in response to skyrocketing (all puns intended) traveler numbers in our area. Southwest and United Airlines have reported more than 100% increases year over year in traveler numbers. The airport reports out in June saw nearly 2 million travelers in May alone. While last year in 2021 was the airport’s busiest year on record, at that point, it has continued to only go up this year. They are prompting additional expansion efforts to continue to meet the travel needs of those passing through the airport.
Additionally, Sarasota was announced as Florida’s Commercial Service Airport of the Year for 2022. The sheer volume of travelers has prompted the number of airlines to increase from 6 just four years ago to eleven airlines currently, boasting 53 nonstop destinations. Last year saw many amazing new service routes during the winter’s busiest season, and expect to see these help keep travelers moving throughout 2022’s holiday season.
“We are honored to be named FDOT’s Commercial Service Airport of the Year for 2022,” Rick Piccolo, president, and CEO, said. “This award acknowledges the outstanding efforts of our employees, contractors, and concessionaires, as well as the strong support from our governing board. Their enthusiasm and commitment help improve the travel experience for our passengers and the desirability of SRQ as the airport of choice.”
While July did see a slump in numbers at the airport, attributed to recession fears, fuel prices, and normal summer slowdown, it is expected to be a busy Fall at the airport. We will surely see continued infrastructure improvements for travelers at the airport over the coming months. Additionally, the nonstop options to get everyone home from the holidays hopefully will ease many of those travel concerns. The news continues to soar for travelers leaving or visiting the Suncoast as our regional airport makes big strides toward keeping us all comfortable, connected, and happily traveling from our backyard here on the Suncoast.
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